Case Study

Acetabular Cups

What do you get when you want to achieve the best results for hip replacement? Our team shares the start-to-finish process of designing and manufacturing Acetabular Cups.


Benefits of AM for Ortho

Additive manufacturing is a clear winner as far as superior clinical outcomes for patients,” said Brian McLaughlin, CEO & Founder of Amplify Additive. “Hip cups are a great example where there is a significant improvement in initial fixation and bone in-growth, coupled with the reduction of supply chain, there are simply no questions about it.”

Brian McLaughlin

Interview in Orthopedic Design Technology Magazine

Key Considerations

Time to Market, Quality & Cost


Acetabular cups, or hip cups, have used traditional manufacturing, such as casting, along with secondary coatings and other procedures to build an orthopedic implant. The full design and traditional manufacturing of a hip cup is an involved and time consuming process.


Using Additive Manufacturing, specifically Electron Beam Melting (EBM), not only gets the product to market faster, it also uses titanium, a bio-compatible material. This induces a more osteogenic environment for bone in-growth and bone on-growth.  

traditional Manufacturing

26-38 weeks

Electron BEam Melting

14-22 weeks

Reduction in Time to Market

Up to 58%

Improved osseointegration

Clinical Benefits


Existing technology for orthopedic adhesion and fusion relies on sintered or sprayed coatings. The resulting pore sizes of traditional coatings range from 100-300 microns, well below the pore sizes many clinical studies have identified for optimal bone in-growth.


Additive manufacturing (AM) replaces traditional coatings with 3-dimensional lattice structures, which improve initial fixation and allow for faster fusion and bone in-growth. Lattice structures are designed for a clinically optimized pore size of 650 microns.

Traditional Coating Pore Sizes

100-300 µm

EBM pore Size

400-800 µm

Optimal Pore Size

650 µm

Technology Overview

EBM vs. Laser


When it comes to Additive Manufacturing, there are two existing technologies designed for orthopedics; EBM or Laser. However, how do you choose which technology to leverage for orthopedics?


EBM is a clear winner when it comes to additively manufactured acetabular cups. The EBM process allows for maximum use of the build volume by stacking parts. Parts are removed by hand and have material properties exceeding ASTM standards (F2924, F3001).     

LAser: Single Build Setup

12 cups

EBM: Single Build Setup

54 cups


“This project epitomizes what is means to leverage AM for orthopedics.”

Brian McLaughlin, CEO & Founder Amplify Additive


EBM for Acetabular Cups

Time to Market is a critical success factor for orthopedic companies. EBM is emerging as the go-to technology for orthopedic implants. When designing additively manufactured parts that will reside inside the human body, such as acetabular cups, clinical relevance is a natural part of the process. EBM has demonstrated to have improved clinical outcomes leading to greater patient and surgeon satisfaction. 

Additive manufacturing is changing how we are thinking about designing and engineering implants and is fueling the future of the Orthopedic industry.


learn more


Acetabular Cup Handout


Additive | Orthopedic | Excellence

ISO 13485:2016

© 2022 ARCH Additive  All rights reserved.