Reverse Engineering a Transhumeral Prosthetic Design for Additive Manufacturing

Rhyne, Breanna J.
Post, Brian K.
Chesser, Phillip
Roschli, Alex
Love, Lonnie J.
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University of Texas at Austin

The customization and time savings additive manufacturing (AM) offers has been applied to construct prosthetics. However, prosthetics produced using AM rarely resemble the original appendage they are intended to replace. This report details the engineering of a transhumeral prosthetic design for AM. A 3D scan of a subject’s existing arm and computer-aided design (CAD) were used to create a mirrored prosthetic, which appeared aesthetically like the existing arm. The process and complexities of integrating mechanical components for basic actuation into a patient-custom prosthetic are discussed. A simple demonstration of the process is provided. The same methodology can be applied to more intricate prosthetics. This work aims to inspire subsequent research into well-functioning, custom prosthetics that can be generated relatively quickly through 3D scanning and AM.