Product Lifecycle Report: PTC Customer Develops Artificial Heart, NASA Re-enters Space




The Winter Edition of PTC’s Product Lifecycle Report is out and packed with interesting articles, two that caught our eye feature PTC Creo:

Japanese Researchers Advance Artificial Heart Design

Researchers at the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Engineering in the medical school at the University of Tokyo are developing an artificial heart with the help of PTC software. In Japan, heart patients wait an average of 981 days for a transplant–that’s more than two and a half years. If the Tokyo group could produce a man-made device that performed just as well as the human organ, they could replace diseased hearts and return patients to good health, or, at the very least keep their circulatory systems running long enough for a donor to be found.

So, using PTC Creo as their design software, the researchers at the University of Tokyo began prototyping and testing a series of innovative mechanical models based on a hydrodynamic levitating impeller pump. Lubricated by the patient’s blood, the design ensures moving parts never touch. The result is a total artificial heart that operates with remarkable efficacy and durability.

Explore the team’s use of PTC Creo here.

U.S. Reenters Manned Space Flight

When the United States retired its space shuttle program in 2011, it marked the end of a 30-year commitment to low earth orbital space travel. Since 1981, space shuttles had flown missions to launch satellites, conduct low-gravity experiments, and build the international space station, all 200 miles or so above the earth. Now, NASA said, it would no longer haul our astronauts or our experiments for those jobs, deferring instead to commercial carriers or other countries’ space programs.

Had America lost interest in the great beyond? Was the U.S. space agency abandoning manned space travel forever?

Not even close. In fact, NASA didn’t even scrap the space shuttle program entirely. Rather, it shifted focus to a new mission—one that aims to put astronauts on Mars within a couple decades.

The Orion and a New Space Launch System

Sometime in the 2030s, NASA wants to take us back into deep space, that is, beyond earth’s orbit. But instead of flying to the moon again, the current plan is to send astronauts on the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle out to the fourth rock from the sun, Mars. The planet is 140 million miles away from earth, and by some estimates, the trip will take about 150 days, each way.

The first test launch of the project took place December 5, 2014. We talked about it here recently, because the Orion was designed using PTC Creo.


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