Originally Published MPMN June 2005
Welcome to the Medical Design & Manufacturing (MD&M) East 2005 trade show! Held June 13–15, 2005, at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City, it promises to be bigger than ever. More than 1500 companies will be exhibiting their products and services, and 30,000 buyers are expected to participate.
New this year is the Automation Technology Expo (ATX). ATX will feature the latest technological advances in custom automation and assembly, robotics, control software, motors, drives, and motion control. The ATX show will be colocated with MD&M East, EastPack, PLASTEC East, and Atlantic Design & Manufacturing.
Conference sessions will run concurrently. Program content is 90% new to MD&M East, and was carefully developed in response to industry input.
MPMN has devoted the next several pages to in-depth coverage of the show. Read on for a sneak peek at the products and services you’ll be seeing there. A conference guide and a look at some companies exhibiting for the very first time are also included.
FIRST TIME EXHIBITORS
Aztec Tool’s Capabilities Are Far from Being Ancient History
The name of a business can suggest many things. Traits such as quality, reliability, and skill are among the traits that customers expect from a business. So when it came to selecting a name for Aztec Tool (Edgewood, NY), the company looked no further than the ancient civilization known for its skilled craftsmanship and toolmaking abilities. Founded in 1977, the firm first established itself as a toolmaker in the cosmetic industry and then expanded into product design and injection molding. The company has been involved with medical manufacturing for the last 10–12 years, according to general manager Harry Herz.
The MD&M East show will be Aztec Tool’s first foray into the medical manufacturing trade show arena. “We go to the show every year for tooling and design systems,” says Herz. “This year we decided it was time to really start promoting ourselves. We want more local customers and since the show caters to a local trade, this is the best bang for the buck.”
The company will be showcasing its tooling and product design capabilities. Samples of injection-molded products will also be on display at the show. However, Herz confesses that the real showpiece for Aztec Tool is its employees. “Our people are the key to our business,” he adds. After hearing lots of positive feedback from show exhibitors in previous years, the company hopes to leave MD&M East with a few good client leads.
Firm Moves behind the Booth
In the past, representatives of Endoscopy Support Services Inc. (ESS; Brewster, NY) walked the halls of the Medical Design & Manufacturing (MD&M) shows as observers. General manager James Burns says that he found the shows “useful for helping [ESS] find items, products, and pieces to make products.”
Burns will be on the exhibitor side of the MD&M East Show booth for the first time this year, and looks forward to companies selecting ESS’s services. These include quickly repairing endoscopic equipment and accessories such as flexible and rigid endoscopes, light sources, and endoscopy video equipment, which may have been deemed incapable of being fixed. The repair cost reportedly is more affordable than what the manufacturer of the equipment charges.
Burns also notes that, at the show, ESS would like to make contacts with large manufacturers wanting to sell ESS’s products under their brand names. Interested companies will choose from equipment ranging from software for image and video capturing to racks, cabinets, and endoscopic carts and trolleys.
The i-Cap software installs on either a laptop or desktop computer, along with the accessories that are included. Once the software is connected to a firm’s video output device, snapshots and videos of a procedure are taken. These images then can be organized by patient ID and reports generated in Microsoft Word. In addition, the firm offers endoscopic carts that are preassembled and a version that requires assembly because it is “flat packed,” according to Burns. Since the flat-pack cart is not bulky, its shipping costs are economical. The company’s Web site includes a link to its on-line carts store, from where a free catalog can be requested.
Innergy Power Gets All Charged Up for New York
After a positive experience at the MD&M West show this past January, Innergy Power (Scotts Valley, CA) decided to hedge its bets and exhibit at the MD&M East show. “We talked to other vendors [at the West show] who told us they generated more leads at the East shows,” says CEO Darrell Musick. “We figured if we got just as many leads at East that we did at West, it would be worth it.”
As a designer and manufacturer of batteries for more than 10 years, Innergy Power has maintained a presence within the medical device industry. The company’s batteries are based upon its patented ThinLine planar-case design, combined with thin-metal-film technology. By integrating these features, the company is able to produce thin, flat, lightweight sealed-lead batteries with performance comparable to that of nickel–cadmium and nickel–metal hydride batteries.
Innergy Power’s latest product, solar energy modules, will be on display at MD&M East. According to Musick, an international aid supplier recently included the modules in kits to be used in tsunami relief efforts. “We provided our 20-W solar modules in a binder-style format, complete with a zippered carrying case, to the supplier,” Musick explains. “The modules fold out for use, and include an adapter cord that allows users to plug the battery into a car’s cigarette lighter.” The module can be used to operate or recharge a 12-V device.
He’s particularly excited about the company’s hybrid unit, which will also be displayed at the show. The hybrid unit runs off of solar panels during daylight and uses battery power at night. “It has some interesting possibilities for medical manufacturing,” adds Musick. The company hopes to explore possible medical device applications for both products at the East show.
It’s All in the Family for Sandvik Coromant
It’s been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. For Sandvik Coromant (Fair Lawn, NJ), the desire to mimic its sister companies has influenced the tooling maker to exhibit at MD&M East. Offering cutting tools for machining metals such as stainless steel and titanium, the company also makes tools for plastics machining.
Sandvik Coromant has been expanding its role in the medical device industry in recent years. According to business development manager Steve Piscopo, the Sandvik engineering group, especially sister company Sandvik Bioline, has been marketing itself more aggressively to the medical device industry. “We’ve been paying attention to what they are doing,” he says. In fact, it was Sandvik Bioline’s experience with medical manufacturing that encouraged the firm to expand its reach into the field. “There’s a good connection between medical manufacturing and Swiss machining,” he says.
Sandvik Coromant’s first appearance on the MD&M show circuit was in Minneapolis in 2004. Again, it was Sandvik Bioline’s success with MD&M shows that encouraged the company to participate. “We looked to see what they were doing to help us figure out how to position ourselves,” says Piscopo.
The company’s focus at MD&M East will be on small-part machining. “We’ve also got a broad product offering for threading, milling, drilling, turning, boring, and parting off,” adds Piscopo. Future plans include adding more services and equipment to its medical manufacturing capabilities.
Company Breathes New Life into Already-Deployed Products
Designing, manufacturing, and deploying a medical device get the ball rolling, but the opportunities for revenue do not end there.
While working as a product manager at Johnson & Johnson, Shannon James Tillman saw the opening for an aftermarket niche where programs and services optimized the value of products after they had been deployed to the field. In August 2000, Millstone Medical Outsourcing (Fall River, MA), which is positioned in the postmanufacturing area of medical devices, was founded with Tillman as president and CEO. The firm now features Johnson & Johnson on its client roster, along with other major orthopedic device makers like Stryker.
Since its inception, the ISO 13485:1996–certified firm has seen an average 90% growth every year. Yet despite having worked with leading orthopedics companies, many of which are based in the eastern United States, Tillman still considers Millstone Medical “the best-kept secret” in the industry. To change this perception, the firm will make its inaugural appearance at a trade show, having chosen the MD&M East Show. Through this medium, Tillman will tell medical device manufacturers that the firm is “saving leading orthopedic OEMs millions of dollars every year by allowing them to avoid the costs of new products, and helping them to better account for and utilize what they have already deployed in the field.”
The company’s core capabilities include reprocessing, repackaging, and field-inventory auditing. Each year Millstone Medical’s field auditing department carries out more than 1200 physical inventories of products consigned to field sales locations across the United States. Financial reporting and presentation; organizational evaluations; and physical counting at hospitals, distributor offices, and regional warehouses are performed. Millstone Medical also provides loaner kit expediting, advanced inspection, ultrasonic cleaning, assembly and packaging, and distribution services. The firm handles products ranging from adhesion barrier polymer delivery systems to spinal pedicle screw implant assemblies. Other capabilities include label production, heat sealing, tubing, manual and automated polybagging, shrink-wrapping, syringe and powder filling, sterilization management, and Class 10,000 clean processing in a nearly 4000-sq-ft controlled environment.
Clients can monitor their products through production on Millstone Medical’s customized on-line inventory management system, which can be accessed worldwide via the Internet.
No Friction in Business Is Key for Firm
Chances are that people associate Bose Corp. with the speakers in their living rooms or noise-canceling headphones. They might not have heard that Bose also manufactures advanced testing equipment for the medical device and engineered materials industries via its business unit, EnduraTEC Systems Group (ESG; Minnetonka, MN).
Bose and EnduraTEC forged a relationship in 1999 when Bose provided patented moving-magnet ElectroForce linear actuators for integration into EnduraTEC’s 9000-series stent/graft testers. The ElectroForce technology, which achieves frequencies of up to 60 Hz, enables precise and extremely fast material-testing protocols to be performed. Evidently liking the achievements of the collaboration, Bose purchased the materials-testing assets of the then-15-year-old EnduraTec in May 2004. It also resolved “to grow the company through broader exposure within the [medical device and engineered materials] industries,” according to the company’s general manager, Ed Moriarty. Exhibiting at the MD&M shows fits into that strategy.
Prior to its acquisition by Bose, ESG had exhibited at the MD&M West and Minneapolis shows. Moriarty notes that the firm had “positive” experiences and was “pleased with the type of response [generated] from customers.” By participating at this year’s East show for the first time, ESG will complete the MD&M trifecta. Moriarty adds: “We may not have been reaching all of the potential customers. We want to ensure that we are reaching customers who are likely to attend only one of the shows to further broaden our exposure.”
At the show, ESG plans to display its test instruments, including the smallest system that the firm supplies. The ElectroForce 3100-series is suitable for tissue mechanics research, bioMEMS evaluation and testing, and durability testing of medical devices. Featuring a friction-free moving-magnet flexure design that replaces traditional bearings, the machines provide durable and precise testing. This is possible because no static friction is created, which occurs and must be overcome when servopneumatic or servohydraulic systems are employed. In addition, this line of products is said to curtail the costs of energy and maintenance. The equipment requires no sound isolation and can be used in a cleanroom. In addition, ESG will showcase the largest version of its stent/graft tester, the ElectroForce Series 9150. This machine can test a stent measuring 18 to 42 mm in diameter.
Moriarty says, “Bose plans to continue to invest in this market.” It’s probably a safe bet, then, that the company will continue to make noise at future MD&M trade shows.
It’s a Neighborhood Block Party at Medivative Technologies
Here’s a riddle: Why did the contract manufacturer cross the street? In the case of Medivative Technologies (Indianapolis), a provider of contract manufacturing and process engineering services, it was to establish itself in the medical device industry.
Founded in 2002 as an offshoot of Aircom Manufacturing, Medivative is literally across the street from its parent company. “We had several medical OEMs coming to [Aircom] for cleanroom injection molding services,” says vice president of business development Ty Whitacre. “There’s a lot of future growth in medical manufacturing, so it was only logical to move in that direction.”
With capabilities ranging from product design to distribution, Medivative feels it has a distinct advantage over other contract manufacturers. In fact, the company’s foundation is built upon Aircom’s 45 years of experience in sheet-metal fabrication and plastic-injection molding. “Because Aircom has such a long history with both metal and plastic, we’re able to solve problems from a manufacturing standpoint that other companies might not be able to address,” states Whitacre. “We have a lot of years of experience, even though we’re young,” adds plant manager Tim Franklin.
Medivative attended the MD&M Minneapolis show in 2004 and decided to exhibit at MD&M East 2005 in order to take advantage of the location. “We have a lot of contacts and salespeople on the East Coast,” says Whitacre. “In my experience, the quality of sales leads that come out of the show have always been very high,” he adds. The company will be showcasing its capabilities in full-service contract manufacturing and medical device development at the show.
Manufacturer of Plastic Components Reaches Out to OEMs, Contract Houses
The most brilliantly conceived products require components that will serve specific needs, translating innovative ideas into product realities. Jerry Zawada, medical segment manager for Busak+Shamban (Fort Wayne, IN), looks forward to proving to potential customers at MD&M East that his company speaks their language. No time could be more appropriate than the firm’s first opportunity to exhibit at a medical device show in the United States. “MD&M East is one of the largest shows in the country, and has proximity to both the U.S. pharmaceutical and medical device industries,” says Zawada.
“We offer a wide variety of sealing and bearing components made from elastomers, thermoplastics, and PTFEs,” Zawada comments. “They’d typically be used in things like blood separators, bone drills, catheters, syringe pumps, oxygen concentrators, and even hospital beds.” Zawada also adds that a recent addition to the company’s product line may hit just the right note in appealing to OEMs looking for performance and cost-effectiveness. “Our line of thermoplastic bearings and bushings is unique because they’re [made of] plastic instead of steel,” minimizing both weight and costs, he says. “They can be used in both durable and nondurable (disposable) applications.” Also to be showcased at the event are spring-energized PTFE seals that are suitable for high-speed rotary applications, including pumps, centrifuges, and bone drills.
In addition to components, Busak+Shamban manufactures plastic materials. The company hopes that a line of perfluoroelastomers called Isolast will strengthen its solid OEM base. “Perfluoros are used a lot in this industry because they have a wide temperature range and fluid compatibility,” remarks Zawada. “They’ve been used for things like high-performance liquid chromatographs and also in O-ring form in a number of liquid-handling devices.”
Company representatives are looking to strengthen their OEM customer base while reaching out to contract houses. “We’re interested in generating concrete leads that would take us into next-generation products,” says Zawada. “Our goal is to be considered a preferred supplier, one-stop shop, and the answer to tough problems and everyday needs.”
Endoscopy Firm Makes Its Debut at MD&M East
An endoscope and endoscope parts manufacturer chose MD&M East as its very first trade show ever. IEC-Innovative Endoscopy Components LLC (Sunrise, FL) says MD&M East is the perfect venue to showcase its product line. The company offers mechanical-, optical-, and injection-molded polymer and electronic items to the medical device industry.
“MD&M has become an international medical device show that attracts visitors from all countries due to its excellent location in New York City, with a tremendous growing amount of visitors,” says the company’s managing director, Gerald Goigitzer. “We also go there to meet some of our customers that we never had the chance to meet in person.”
The company started out six years ago as the U.S. sales office for a German endoscope and endoscope parts manufacturer, Rudolf Innoview GmbH. Initially they only provided three different items, but many models of each. Now they stock almost 500 items ranging from optical endoscope objectives and lenses to insertion tubes and parts for the flexible repair industry, arthroscopic shaver blades, and parts for orthopedic power tools.
Firm Chooses MD&M East for Its First Trade Show
About four years ago, Rob Connelly visited the MD&M East show. “I was amazed at everything they had,” he says. “Almost anything that you could imagine for the medical device industry was there.”
Apparently he never forgot the experience because when he started up FineLine Prototyping (Raleigh, NC) he choose MD&M East as the new company’s very first trade show. About 60% of the company’s business is in medical devices, so he says the show is perfect for them.
The core service offered at FineLine is the prototyping of three-dimensional objects using stereolithography (SL) technology. High-resolution SL is the company’s specialty. A high-resolution SL part build uses a 0.003 to 0.004-in.-diam laser beam and/or a layer thickness less than 0.004 in.
Building parts with the smaller laser-beam diameter results in parts with sharp corners and the thinnest possible walls. Thin layers reduce the cleanup required to smooth out contours or to polish tooling masters. This build style results in accurate, high- quality parts, according to the company.
Another service available is SLArmor. Exclusively from FineLine, this technology finishes off an advanced ceramic-filled epoxy material from DSM Somos—ProtoTool 20L—with a metal coating that gives parts the look, feel, and strength of metal, but without the weight. Reportedly, the composite nature of the process gives SLArmor a greater strength-to-weight ratio than many metals.
The company also offers FMF, a microfluidic fabrication process, that it says offers shortened development time for microfluidic devices of all shapes and sizes. It is a modified form of high-resolution stereolithography that allows the creation of any three-dimensional object through a process of stacking two-dimensional layers of 50-µm thickness. If the ultimate objective is to injection mold a microfluidic product, the FMF process enables designing and testing of most features. This process eliminates the constraints created by the limitations of conventional or mask-less photolithography.
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