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GVSU Alum Partnered with the GVSU Applied Medical Device Institute and created a product that could transform the industry of surgical training

November 20, 2017

GVSU Alum Partnered with the GVSU Applied Medical Device Institute and created a product that could transform the industry of surgical training

GVSU alum, Jim TenBrink, created a product that could transform the industry of surgical training. TenBrink is the co-owner of Encoris Group Corp., founded in Holland, MI.

The S2T Surgical Smart Trainer is a lifelike torso that TenBrink believes could replace the use of cadavers in training for minimally invasive spinal procedures. The S2T Surgical Smart Trainer model eliminates the use of cadavers and the need for employees to travel to a single location. Surgeons, academics, and researchers could get hands-on training without having to leave their office or labs. The S2T Surgical Smart Trainer model is safer by significantly reducing the amount of radiation surgeons are exposed to during training sessions. TenBrink believes this product will revolutionize the way surgeons are trained in spinal procedures and how medical device companies research and test innovations.  

TenBrink reached out to GVSU’s Applied Medical Device Institute (aMDI) with his idea and prototype of the S2T Surgical Smart Trainer model. The aMDI serves the medical device community and provides a full range of services including, developing analytical and physical models; rapid prototyping and fabricating systems; and comprehensive testing for technical feasibility. Connecting academia and industry, students and faculty have access to opportunities involved in research projects and product development.

Several GVSU faculty and staff worked with TenBrink to enhance the S2T Surgical Smart Trainer design. This process included developing the interval electrical and mechanical systems and software for the surgical trainer. GVSU faculty and students at the aMDI worked with TenBrink on the model and analyzed and developed a test for a complex system in the surgical trainer that mimics the motion of the spine. Encoris is planning another project with targeted production in 2019 that will again engage students and faculty at the aMDI.

The Encoris S2T Surgical Smart Trainer is a 2017 Excellence in Surgical Products (ESP) Award Nominee! Congrats to GVSU Alum, Jim TenBrink and Encoris Group Corp.!

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Page last modified November 20, 2017