Dedicated 3D Printing Toolkit in Simpleware ScanIP S-2021.06

Posted on 7 June 2021 by Celia Butler


 S-2021.06 release of Simpleware ScanIP, which includes an all-new 3D printing toolkit, making it easier than ever before to work with complex image data and integrate with 3D printing workflows.

3D Printing Toolkit

Although well-established for industrial and consumer R&D, 3D printing is becoming increasingly popular for medical fields, where device manufacture, pre-surgical planning, patient communication, and training all require highly accurate, patient-specific models. Creating such models has always been a key strength of Simpleware software. However, this capability has now been expanded in our S-2021.06 release through a dedicated 3D printing toolkit, with options for:

  • Data conversion: Work with surface models generated from image-based masks.
  • Preparation: A range of tools to cut, hollow, emboss text or create connectors.
  • Greyscale visualization: Apply a color map to the surface of the 3D printed model representing the bone density using the greyscale values from CT image data.
  • Inspection: Apply color proofing and check printability to help get the model right first time.
  • Export: Use both specific and general surface export formats (*.3mf, *.stl, *.obj, etc.) suitable for a variety of 3D printers.

Benefits of Using the Simpleware 3D Printing Toolkit

  • Sub-voxel accuracy: Simpleware software’s state-of-the-art meshing technology is volume and topology preserving, resulting in highly accurate models.
  • Traceability: Add patient or part numbers to models using the emboss tool.
  • Save time: Interactive cutting and connector tools allow quick model preparation.
  • Perfect models, first time: Use inspection tools to ensure a printable model.
  • Ease-of-use: All relevant tools are contained within a single ribbon tab.

3D Printing Toolkit in Action

Once you have segmented your image data using either our AI-based automatic segmentation tools or a range of semi-automated and manual tools, you can convert these image-based masks into surfaces. Segmented data can also be combined with CAD models of implants, prosthetics, and other medical devices to build up your model.

Use the preparation tools to:

  • Remove or separate parts
  • Create connectors to support weak joins between thin parts, bone. or vessels
  • Add a patient ID or part numbers to ensure traceability

If you have access to a color printer, it can similarly be useful to visualize greyscale information from your original image data on a 3D printed model. Results are shown as a color map, with options to control the sampling method and depth. This approach could be very valuable for anatomical models, for example when considering the bone density where a fixing would be used for an implant during pre-surgical planning. 

Other options in the new 3D printing toolkit include inspection tools to check the printability of your model and identify common pitfalls such as whether the model is watertight, has self-intersections or non-manifold edges, thin walls, etc. In addition, you can color proof your model for a specific 3D printer.

Once the part has been inspected, it can be exported in a range of formats that are commonly used by 3D printers (*.3mf, *.stl, *.obj, etc.). Furthermore, a 3D PDF of the same model can be created and shared with colleagues for discussion and development.

Learn More

Get the Latest Version

For existing customers, please visit SolvNetPlus to download the new version. Please be aware that the format of the installer has changed - see the installation guide and contact Simpleware support for further help and information. 

If you would like to try Simpleware S-2021.06, download a fully functional trial version:

Any Questions?

If you would like to know more, please contact us. Our technical specialists will be happy to help you with any questions or challenges you are facing.