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CT scan data used in the reconstruction of a life-size skull in 3D printing and VR

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Using the data from an employees’ CT scan 3M Buckley Innovation Centre (3M BIC) 3D printed two life-sized skulls – one using SLS and the other FDM technology.

With this in-house project the Huddersfield-based design team aimed to demonstrate how 3D printing has advanced and the impact it can have in the medical and healthcare industries. In this particular instance, the reconstruction of a damaged skull.

In addition to the 3D prints the team has since converted the files for use in virtual reality applications, including the Microsoft Hololens.

The original process of converting the raw data from the MRI (DICOM data) to a 3D printable file, Paul Tallon, consultant designer at 3M BIC, and visualisation assistant, Luke Phillips, used a free software called OsiriX to assemble the layers of the scan and create a 3D model.


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