3D-circuits technology shrinks medical wearable devices
3D-MID (mechatronic integrated devices, also known as 3D-circuits) technology integrates circuits directly into three-dimensional thermoplastic substrates, said Harting. This can shrink the circuitry and end product, for example, the housing of a hearing aid can be used to support the circuitry, replacing a separate circuit board.
This technology enables the seamless combination of electronic and mechanical functions in a single component, which also eliminates the need of additional connecting points for the antenna. Eliminating these requirements means in-ear devices can be made as small as possible, which not only makes hearing aids nearly invisible, but also improves performance and comfort, said the company. Shapes can be custom-designed for a perfect fit to the ear, improving sound quality and minimising power consumption by reducing the weight of the entire component.
With 3D-MID, the integration of both electrical and mechanical functions achieves a higher function density that enables developers to pack more capabilities into the same space. This advance facilitates miniaturisation, without compromising on the range of functions, for example improving sound quality and reducing power consumption for hearing aids.
Harting added that 3D-MID can transform how wearable medical devices are designed and utilised, for enhanced capabilities possible within a sleeker and more comfortable form factor.
Harting provides 3D-MIDs for medical products, including medical grade raw materials and those prepared for additional sterilisation.
Harting claimed that it is the world’s only 3D-MID provider with seamless integration of the entire process chain under one roof. This ranges from concept design and prototyping to all four manufacturing steps, injection moulding, lasering, chemical coating and assembly with function control and testing all done in-house.
Harting 3D-MID is based in Biel, Switzerland, a growing hub for medical technology, optics and precision engineering.