Finite element superplastic forming (FE-SPF) of patient-specific maxillofacial prostheses

A. J. Gil, R. V. Curtis, J. Bonet, T. Coward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes the application of superplastic forming (SPF) technology to the manufacturing of maxillofacial prostheses for human implants. A combined numerical/experimental methodology is explained in detail whereby initial patient-specific data are collected in the form of computed tomography/magnetic resonance imaging scans and a final titanium alloy Ti-6A1-4V (suitably selected for bio-compatibility and osseo-integration) prosthesis is obtained for subsequent implantation into the damaged area of the patient. Various aspects ranging from the computational challenges (i.e. scanning technology, mesh generation, the finite element incremental flow formulation, pressure time cycle) to the experimental/medical aspects (i.e. SPF laboratory conditions, patient data, SPF patient-specific process, medical feedback) will be discussed. A cranioplasty prosthesis and an orbital floor prosthesis are presented in order to show the robustness and applicability of the methodology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139 - 155
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal For Numerical Methods In Biomedical Engineering
Issue number1
Early online date11 May 2009
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2010


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