On 17 June, the Center for Information Technology (CIT) of the University of Groningen (UG) organized the second edition of TechTalks050. This time, the theme was ‘Digital technologies in elite sport: calculating nature in advance’.
At the second edition of TechTalks050, Professor Bert Otten (University of Groningen) spoke about the evolution of mechanisms and his research into sport facilities and prosthetics that use digital technologies.
“Soon, you will understand what prosthetic legs and fish heads have in common”, began Otten in opening the evening. The story about the fish heads refers to the ‘Haplochromis’: a group of evolved fish species that have a complex construction in their heads so that they can better attract food sources. With the help of computer simulations, Otten replicated this form of evolution and applied it to other mechanisms. Examples include aids used in sport, such as ice skates, rollerblades and skis with specially built-in mechanisms, but also devices used in healthcare, such as prosthetic legs. “We can learn a lot from real-life evolution and, due to the ever-increasing calculation rate in particular, the future lies before us”, claimed Otten.
Movement technologist Sophie Blom works as a 3D designer. She explained how OIM Orthopedie uses 3D printing as a production method for orthopaedic devices such as arm and leg prosthetics. The big advantage of 3D printing is that users can experience a good balance between comfort, control and the cosmetic finish of the prosthetics. According to Blom, 3D printing will not become the standard production method, as there are still many more good techniques available. “I expect that we will increasingly print more 3D products. Let’s exploit the benefits of this technique, so that we can use 3D printing as optimally as possible.”
The next edition will take place on the evening of Monday 30 September. If you are curious about the theme of the next edition of TechTalks050, make sure to check our website regularly or subscribe to our
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See you at TechTalks050!
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