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The Application of Vacuum Casting System for Simplifying the Design of Transtibial Sockets

[+] Author Affiliations
Huai-Sheng Yang, Lai-Shing Shiu, Chieh-Teng Chi, Hao-Chin Chang

National Chen Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan, R.O.C.

Kuo-Feng Huang

Fooyin University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, R.O.C.

Paper No. IMECE2009-10835, pp. 59-62; 4 pages
  • ASME 2009 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 2: Biomedical and Biotechnology Engineering
  • Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA, November 13–19, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4375-8 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3863-1
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


Prosthetic sockets are one of the most important pieces of equipment for a transtibial amputee to maintain a regular life. Rapid Prototyping is becoming mature and low-cost to fit the CAD system that can conserve the shapes of the stump and socket for reproducing the sockets. If the stump shape can be accurately obtained and the prosthetists’ expertise can be included in a CAD system, then a prosthetic socket will be easily designed by a prosthetist. The stump was scanned to get the shape for the construction and modification of the stump model in a CAD system. However, the stump trembled during the scanning process, the scanner was sensitive about the skin move, so that the scanned data will not exactly represent the real stump shape. This study used a vacuum casting system to gain the stump model instead of creating a positive plaster model in the traditional process of fabricating prosthetic sockets. The stump shape under various vacuum pressures was obtained using a scanning machine and built in a CAD system. The CAD model of the stump will be modified to meet the load-bearing capability of the specific amputee. The use of the vacuum casting method is expected to simplify the design of a socket that will be fabricated by a rapid prototyping machine. Simplifying the designs of transtibial socket can decrease the dependence of human experience and promote the quality and stability of prosthetic sockets.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME
Topics: Casting , Vacuum , Design



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