One of the most exciting programs currently under development at MICRO is a new instrument manufacturing program. A prominent medical OEM has contracted MICRO to manufacture and assemble 4 distinct types of a reusable laparoscopic surgical instrument. These devices are highly effective in the grasping of soft tissue during minimally invasive procedures.
MICRO has invested in new machining centers for this large undertaking, boosting its already impressive repertoire of CNC capability. The first, a Haas DM-1 (Drill/Mill) vertical machining center, features a 15,000 RPM spindle, 15 HP Vector Drive, and 18+1 Side-Mount Tool Changer. This machine is responsible for the manufacturing of three handle components and secondary operations on the actuation rod. The second, a Willemin-Macodel 408-MT (Mill/Turn) machining center, adds 5-axis capability to MICRO’s production floor. This bar fed machine is ideal for small scale, high precision manufacturing of components with complex geometry. It is responsible for the manufacturing of the end effector jaws and linkage components. It also marks the first time MICRO is machining from plastic bar stock.
In addition to the impressive technology behind the manufacturing of the components themselves, MICRO will be performing all of the final assembly on these devices, in compliance with FDA and ISO requirements. This means a high-level skill set is necessary for each production phase and the final assembly in order to give the surgeon a device that feels and functions as good as it looks. The technology and skills derived from this program will carve a path for MICRO to manufacture more complete, finished surgical instruments in the future.