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Helping surgeons prepare for life-saving operations.

Surgeons today learn their craft by practicing surgeries on cadavers and living patients, but it’s rare that they get the opportunity to practice outside of a clinical environment. This can cause a lack of understanding of potential complications prior to surgery, and surgeries not going ahead due to uncertainties around their success.

Researcher Richard Arm and his team from Nottingham School of Art & Design are transforming patients' scan data into 3D printed models that are identical in shape, size and tactility to real human organs. By applying the latest advanced manufacturing techniques to the healthcare industry, our researchers are providing ground-breaking solutions that will support surgeons to undertake highly technical and often life-saving surgical operations with fewer complications.


By collaborating with industry partners, such as experts at the Ministry of Defence and consultant surgeons and radiologists, Richard and his team are using innovative technologies to produce sustainable and repairable model organs. These realistic prototypes are tailor-made to mirror the size, structure and condition of living patients' organs. Enabling surgeons and trainees to rehearse and repeat complex procedures until they are confident and proficient enough to undertake real operations.

This ground-breaking research is shaping the future of medical training and medical interventions through innovation and the development of advanced medical materials. Encompassing transformative improvements to patient outcomes and quality of care, as well as widening the candidacy for surgery and saving more lives.

This research was submitted to the Art and Design Unit of Assessment in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021, where 83% of the impact was assessed to be of world-leading or internationally excellent quality.

Medical Technologies and Advanced Materials

Our Advanced Textiles research is drawn from the strategic research theme of Medical Technologies and Advanced Materials.

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Advanced Textiles Research Group

The Advanced Textiles Research Group, formed by Professor Tilak Dias in 2010, is a thriving research group at Nottingham Trent University. NTU is a leading institution for advanced textiles research.

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