Wij Inholland award 2018: Apro (ENG)

Désiree prints a new palate for her dog

3D scanning and printing in veterinary science. This topic provided Désiree Oudenaarden with an internship at Inholland Innovation Studio, a social and creative platform at Inholland Delft which facilitates technical and sustainable driven projects made by studentsRather remarkable, especially since Désiree is the first-ever student Applied Animal Science (Dier- & Veehouderij) to do this particular internship. Désiree: “I’ve always dreamt of finding a solution for my dog’s cleft palate.”

Together with Elise Dalm, Désiree did research on 3D scanning and printing within veterinary science. “I have a 3D printer at home, and I’m interested in the possibilities regarding animal care, such as building prostheses. My dog was born with a cleft palate and he received surgical treatment for this. Unfortunately, the surgery failed due to torn tissue. That gave me the idea to scan my dog’s palate, print a piece of tissue and place it inside his mouth. I immediately consulted my teachers to explore the possibilities.”

Working together with aviation technicians
Désiree: “During our studies, they teach us a lot about animal welfare, such as health and ethical responsibilities. It’s not possible to release a product that irritates the skin for example. For this reason, I learned to use biocompatible materials.” In order to start her project, Désiree contacted several students and teachers of the study programme Aviation Technology (Luchtvaarttechnologie). “They were very hospitable. We worked together well and they taught me a lot.”

Future plans
Désiree wants to carry on with her project. “The first step is always the hardest. I need to conduct further research on printing living tissue. I tried to find would-be interns who might be interested in transferring ‘scanned files’ to printable files. This is not only crucial for plastic prostheses in general, but also for the future of printing living tissue. I’m keen to further explore this topic, so I can help more animals. Think about printing 3D shells for turtles for example. I truly hope, even if I don’t win the Wij Inholland award, that this project entices other Inholland-programmes and companies to collaborate. That would make me very happy.”

Talk about it
Désiree has one piece of advice: always talk about your idea! “My project would’ve never come about if I hadn’t articulated my ideas. So, share them! Inholland presents students with so many possibilities. Imagine being interested in working with animals for example, but in the field of physiotherapy. Then you could start a partnership with Sport Management (Sportkunde).”

Wij Inholland 
Wij Inholland gives students the opportunity to raise awareness for their projects. A platform on which they can distinguish themselves with an innovative and multidisciplinary project. This project should focus on either health, sustainability or creativity. Moreover, it should also add a regional value by working in close collaboration with a (local) company, institution or community. The winning team receives practical support and a € 2000, - cheque.

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