TEACHING INNOVATION:

“CDIO” IN MECHANICAL AND BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING

According to our experience, the graduates and post-graduates from multidisciplinary engineering programmes, including Industrial and Mechanical Engineering, can play varied and very relevant roles in several industries (including transport, energy, health and aerospace) and in extremely complex product development projects. We carry out teaching-learning experiences in several subjects and UPM programmes linked to Industrial, Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering, including: “Engineering Design” and “Bioengineering Design” in the Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering, “Bioengineering” in the Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering, “Machine Design” in the Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Technologies and “Development of Medical Devices” in the Bachelor’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering. We incorporate research results into the different subjects and try to promote project-based learning following the CDIO (conceive-design-implement-operate) approach, enabling students to live through the complete development process of novel innovative engineering systems and products.

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Example of students’ developments linked to machines: Gear pump and “gerotor” gearbox.
Example of students’ developments linked to machines: Gear pump and “gerotor” gearbox.

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Example of students’ developments linked to a sternum-rib and shoulder prostheses.
Example of students’ developments linked to a sternum-rib and shoulder prostheses.

 

Additional information:

  • Díaz Lantada, A.; Ros Felip, A.; Jiménez Fernández, J.; Muñoz García, J.; Claramunt Alonso, R.; Carpio Huertas, J..- “CDIO experiences in Biomedical Engineering: Preparing Spanish students for the future of medicine and medical device technology”. 12th International CDIO Conference, Turku, Finland, June, 2016.
  • Muñoz-Guijosa, J.M.; Díaz Lantada, A.; Chacón Tanarro, E.;, Echávarri Otero, J.; Muñoz Sanz, J.L.; Muñoz García, J..- “Engineering Design course transformation: From a conceive – design towards a complete CDIO approach”. 12th International CDIO Conference, Turku, Finland, June, 2016.
  • Díaz Lantada, A.; Ros Felip, A.; Jiménez Fernández, J.; Muñoz García, J.; Claramunt Alonso, R.; Carpio Huertas, J..- “Integrating Biomedical Engineering Design into Engineering curricula: Benefits and challenges of the CDIO approach”. 11th International CDIO Conference, Cheng-Du, China, 2015.
  • http://www.cdio.org/node/6192

 

Promotion of Science, Technology & Society approaches

Science and Technology are part of every branch of modern life and fundamental for the future and sustainability of Society. At the same time, only in intimate contact with the needs and problems of people can we drive the scientific-technological advances towards the adequate directions, aimed at building a more harmonic global civilization with healthier societies. In consequence, as part of our research, we focus on the application of our experience and resources to objects connected with our every-day life, focusing on the needs of people and trying to attract talent for building together the future of Science, Technology and Society, which is linked to the promotion of scientific-technological vocations. Among the more relevant aspects, in which we focus, it is important to cite:

  • Attendance to and organization of events for promoting scientific-technological vocations.
  • Scientific divulgation videos, reports and events on product design.
  • Scientific divulgation videos, reports and events on additive manufacturing.
  • Models for technical presentations and benchmarking purposes.
  • Models for exhibitions, fairs and contests, including architectural models.
  • Models for toy makers and prototypes of parts and molds for the toy industry.
  • Models for the jewelry and fashion industries, which benefit from 3D printing.
  • Reconstructions, reproductions and master models of artistic objects and sculptures.
  • Teaching-learning activities linked to product design (see Section on Teaching Innovation).
Examples of students’ design within the “Toy Design Experience” in the “Design and Manufacturing with Polymers” course (Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering, UPM).
Examples of students’ design within the “Toy Design Experience” in the “Design and Manufacturing with Polymers” course (Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering, UPM).

Surface design and functionalization of materials and products

Material (and device) surface topography has a direct influence on several relevant properties, linked to its final performance, such as friction coefficient, wear resistance, self-cleaning ability, biocompatibility, optical response and properties, touch perception, overall aesthetic aspect and even flavor. Therefore it also plays a determinant role in material selection in engineering design, especially in the field of micro- and nano-system development, in which the effects of topography on the incorporation of advanced properties are even more remarkable. The possibility of manufacturing textured materials and devices, with surface properties controlled from the design stage, instead of being the result of machining processes or chemical attacks, is a key factor for the incorporation of advanced functionalities to a wide set of micro and nanosystems. In our lab, high-precision additive manufacturing technologies based on photo-polymerization, together with the use of fractal and math-based models linked to computer-aided design tools, allow us to precisely define and control of final surface properties. In this fascinating field of research and development, we usually dedicate our efforts to the following topics:

  • Design of bioinspired surfaces based on math-based approaches.
  • Control of surface topography and micro-texture from the design stage.
  • Design and development of hydrophobic / hydrophilic patterns for enhanced tribology.
  • Incorporation of desired surface properties to final applications.
  • Improved ergonomics, aesthetics, optical properties and contact phenomena.
Examples of bioinspired surface designs and probes with design-controlled surface features.
Examples of bioinspired surface designs and probes with design-controlled surface features.

Knowledge-based design of complex geometries for improved functionality

viii) Knowledge-based design of complex geometries for improved functionality

Additive manufacturing technologies, by working on a layer-by-layer approach, enable solid free-form manufacture and the production of materials, devices and products with complex geometries impossible to obtain otherwise. Geometrical complexity can be used to integrate several functions in a single part, to optimize the number of components of engineering systems and to reduce the manufacturing steps involved in mass-production. Such geometrical complexity is also interesting for the promotion of biomimetic designs, for improving ergonomics and for enhancing mechanical, dynamical, thermal and fluidic functionalities following bioinspired design strategies and other theories for the generation of innovative and efficient designs, such as the constructal law. At the same time, geometrical complexity is inherent to topological optimization and to other optimization procedures aimed at minimizing material consumption and maximizing certain functionalities per mass unit. As regards the design and tool-less manufacture of complex geometries, we are actively working in research and development lines including:

  • Design of bioinspired support structures for eco-efficient additive manufacture.
  • Design and application of lattice and porous structures for developing metamaterials
  • Design and application of complex geometries for special properties (i.e. auxetics).
  • Design and application of lattice and porous geometries for efficient product development.
  • Design and application of complex geometries for efficient product development.
  • Topological optimization procedures towards improved resistance vs. weight.
  • Topological optimization procedures towards improved mass distributions.
Examples of complex geometries attainable by means of additive manufacturing technologies.
Examples of complex geometries attainable by means of additive manufacturing technologies.

Knowledge-based design of multifunctional / advanced materials

Numerous active, multipurpose or “smart” materials have appeared in recent decades, all capable of responding in a controllable way to different external physical and chemical stimuli by changing some of their properties. These materials can be used to design sensors, actuators and multipurpose systems. In addition, special “metamaterials” are designed to obtain desired properties by means of adequately defining and controlling their microstructure. All these materials can be considered “knowledge-based”(for the special design requirements involved in their selection and application) and “multifunctional” (for their unique properties connecting different domains of Physics and Chemistry) materials. Since 2012 we actively collaborate with the “European Virtual Institute on Knowledge-Based Multifunctional Materials” (KMM-VIN) (http://kmmvin.eu), especially in tasks linked to materials modelling and to biomedical applications of innovative biomaterials, having hosted its 5th Industrial Workshop on “Multi-scale and multi-physics materials modelling for advanced industries”.
http://kmmvin.eu/system/files/u279/kboch/Uloaded/KMM-VIN_Workshop_Madrid_2016_Booklet.pdf

Among the activities we perform linked to knowledge-based multifunctional & advanced materials, mainly focused to smart materials and mechanical metamaterials, we highlight:
– Knowledge-based design of smart materials & metamaterials.
– Characterization, modelling and simulation of smart materials & metamaterials.
– Industrial applications of smart materials & metamaterials.
– Manufacture of smart materials & metamaterials and of applications based on them.

Examples of smart materials and metamaterials: Design, models, prototypes, applications. SEM images of prototypes obtained in collaboration with KNMF-KIT.
Examples of smart materials and metamaterials: Design, models, prototypes, applications.
SEM images of prototypes obtained in collaboration with KNMF-KIT.

Innovative composite and nano-composite materials for advanced industries

Composite materials are fundamental in modern product development, as they help to enhance the performance of engineering systems, enabling special mechanical properties, electrical responses, thermal behavior and typically optimizing overall weight. Traditional fiber-reinforced polymers perform at par with special and expensive alloys. Resins functionalized with nano-particles promote special mechanical, thermal, electrical, optical and even self-sensing and piezo-chromic effects. Multi-layered materials combine structural stability with impact resistance, even performing as complex organic biomaterials. Lattices with knitted electrically conductive or reinforcing fibers enable “smart” composites with actuation capabilities or with improved biological response. Some fields of research linked to composites and nano-composites, to which we devote efforts include:

  • 3D printed resins with nano-fillers for improved product functionalities.
  • Self-sensing composites and nano-composites for smart engineering systems.
  • Smart shape-memory composites for electro-thermo-mechanical coupling in smart systems.
  • Composite tissue engineering scaffolds for biomimetic response in articular repair.
  • Characterization and modelling of composite and nano-composite materials.
  • Industrial applications of composite and nano-composite materials.

 

composite
Examples of innovative composites and nano-composites: 3D printed epoxy with nano-fillers of graphene, Cu nanowires and W nano-particles. Shape memory epoxy – electrotextile smart composite. Composite Ti-porous PDMS tissue engineering scaffold for articular repair. Tubular laser sintered polyamide scaffold with knitted carbon fiber for tendon repair

Design and development of micro-electro-mechanical systems.

Micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) are advanced engineering systems with functional dimensions or details in the micrometric range that benefit from operating at the micro-scale, which promotes the speed of chemical reactions, enables fast and precise interactions at cellular and even molecular levels, minimizes energy and materials consumption, helps with mass-production and high throughput testing procedures and boosts overall sustainability. Initially obtained by applying technologies from the electronic industry, now we can manufacture MEMS and bio-MEMS using a wide set of metals, alloys, ceramics, composites and polymers and this versatility promotes industrial applications in fields including: health, energy, transport, aerospace, robotics and architecture. In the medical field, these MEMS usually involve micro-fluidic operation and are linked to specific areas of research including point-of-care testing, labs-on-chips and organs-on-chips. Our experience and technologies help to follow steady development processes and to rapidly reach mass-production after initial conceptual trials. In this area we devote ourselves to the following research, development, innovation and translation tasks:

  • Simulation of microsystems based on smart/multifunctional materials.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of microsensors and microactuators.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of microfluidic systems.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of microdevices for diagnosis and therapy.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of biomedical microsystems for point-of-care testing.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of labs-on-chips and organs-on-chips.
  • Functional trials for validation and optimization towards mass-production.
Example of design, simulation, rapid prototyping and testing of cell culture microsystem aimed at modelling interactions between cells cultured under static and dynamic conditions. In collaboration with Prof. Josefa Predestinación García-Ruíz, UAM.
Example of design, simulation, rapid prototyping and testing of cell culture microsystem aimed at modelling interactions between cells cultured under static and dynamic conditions.
In collaboration with Prof. Josefa Predestinación García-Ruíz, UAM.

 

Design and development of solutions for transport and space

The components and systems developed for highly competitive industrial sectors, such as transport (including automotive, railways and aeronautics) and space, whose responsibility is also noteworthy, must be designed following systematic development methodologies. The support of technologies, including computer-aided resources and rapid prototyping & production tools, enables researchers and developers to swiftly detect potential problems and to promote safety, while optimizing time-to-market and costs. The use of complex lattice or porous structures, which can be additively manufactured, helps to develop parts and subsystems with optimal resistance vs. weight ratio, which is of special importance for transport, aeronautics and space applications. The employment of scale models, obtained by adequate application of the Vaschy-Buchingham p theorem, helps to analyze systems’ performance before taking relevant production decisions. In our group we devote research efforts to these areas, in connection with the previously mentioned design and development trends, in applications including:

  • Design, modelling and manufacture of aerodynamic / hydrodynamic surfaces.
  • Topological optimization procedures towards improved resistance vs. weight.
  • Topological optimization procedures towards improved mass distributions.
  • Development of models for wind tunnel testing (usually in transport and aeronautics).
  • Design of models with modular elements and related test-benches for systematic testing.
Prototypes for wind tunnel testing: Airplane model for the “fly your ideas” contest. High speed train model with exchangeable frontal for systematic comparative studies
Prototypes for wind tunnel testing: Airplane model for the “fly your ideas” contest. High speed train model with exchangeable frontal for systematic comparative studies

Design and development of energy engineering systems

Energy engineering systems are typically highly complex and involve several parts, materials, manufacturing and mounting processes, which can be optimized (towards enhanced performance, time-to-market and costs) if the adequate design methodologies are used and if such systems are redesigned for being additively manufactured. Such redesigns usually involve the use of complex geometries that allow for integration of functionalities and for a reduction in the final number of parts and production processes involved. The combined used of mechanic, dynamic, thermal and fluidic FEM simulations and the benefits of additive manufacturing resources, when dealing with complex geometries, is a beneficial strategy towards effective and efficient energy engineering systems. Characterization of performance, combining in a synergic way the potential of thermal finite-element models and the visual appeal of infrared thermography, is also among the relevant aspects for success. In our group we devote research efforts to energy engineering processes and systems including:

  • Design, modelling and manufacture of (micro-) heat exchangers.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of (micro-) heat sinks.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of (micro-) turbines and pumps.
  • Design, modelling and manufacture of (micro-) compressors and aerogenerators.
  • FEM modelling towards performance optimization.
  • Infrared thermography for performance evaluation.
Design, modelling and manufacture of novel heat exchangers and innovative heat sinks.

Design and development of biomedical devices and medical technologies

At UPM’s Product Development Lab we apply Mechanical Engineering principles and systematic (bio-) engineering design methodologies for the development of innovative medical devices, always linked to relevant social needs and connected with medical professionals and the medical industry. The use of computer-aided design and engineering resources supports the design of biomedical devices and the in silico assessment of their potential performance. The employment of advanced micro- and nano-manufacturing tools allows the incorporation of tiny features for improving their biological response. The use of biofunctionalization procedures and post-processes is also becoming common-practice for an enhanced performance, which must be clearly assessed by systematic testing procedures before deciding to tackle mass-production and commercialization. In addition, the information obtained using medical imaging technologies can be almost directly converted in three-dimensional objects (replicating the geometries and structures of human body and biological systems) and subsequently used as input in CAD programs, for designing personalized medical devices adapted to the morphologies of such biostructures. Final manufacture of the personalized biodevices can be accomplished with help of several computer-aided manufacturing and solid free-form fabrication or additive manufacturing technologies, as examples from our team show.

 

Main lines of research, innovation and translation within the field of biomedical devices and medical technologies include:

  • Design and development of biomedical devices and medical technologies.
  • Biomaterials and biomechanics.
  • Bioinspired mechanical systems and biomimetics.
  • Simulation in Biomedical and Biomechanical Engineering.
  • Biomedical microdevices for interacting with cells: Labs- & organs-on-chips.
  • Tissue engineering and biofabrication.
  • Cell-cell and cell-material interactions.
Overall scheme of the systematic methodology applied to the design of biodevices. Díaz Lantada, A. & Lafont Morgado, P., Annual Review of Biomedical Engineering.
Overall scheme of the systematic methodology applied to the design of biodevices.
Díaz Lantada, A. & Lafont Morgado, P., Annual Review of Biomedical Engineering.