Adidas has created the future of performance footwear with 3D Futurecraft, which is a unique 3D printed running shoe midsole which can be tailored to the cushioning needs of an individual’s foot. Rather than printing an entire shoe, a step that requires some developments in material printing technology, they just print midsole. They have just dubbed this insert the Futurecraft 3D. By inviting an athlete into the run on a treadmill wired to track pressure points, curves and impact points made while running, the current prototype of Futurecraft was created. From that data, they have designed the best midsole for that particular pair of feet. After that, they printed the midsole for immediate insertion into athlete shoes.
Adidas is planning to offer the same service and delivery model in stores, once the Futurecraft 3D sees the full release, likely phased in beginning with large and major market locations. Various athletic sports giants like Nike, Adidas and different high fashioned brands, have been flirting with 3D manufacturing from last two to three years. For brands, it shows a chance to cut several steps out of a complex, expensive and sometimes ethically questionable supply chain. That means for the consumer this is an opportunity to wear custom fitted shoes at the raise-off price point.
The Futurecraft 3D prototypes are limited production. They are in testing. Adidas promised to reveal more about this and similar projects over next sixth months.
Eric Liedtke, Executive Board Member of Adidas AG said, “Futurecraft 3D is a prototype and a statement of intent. We have used a one of its kind combination of process and material in an entirely new way. Our 3D printed midsole not only allow us to make a great running shoe, but also to use performance data to drive the need for an athlete.”
Futurecraft 3D is materialized assisted, Adidas with the generation of a lightweight structure. In the 3D printed midsole which will keep the shoe at a comfortable weight. The engineering team at materialising worked with 3 magic STL to create the structure by improving midsoles flexibility without compromising on rigidness and strength. Then midsole was laser sintered in TPU (the first durable fully- flexible 3D printing material to be used in a consumer product, through materialise certified manufacturing process.
In order to provide the ultimate personalized experience for all athletes, Adidas created a unique combination of material and process, this production will take the running shoe standard to next level, by offering unprecedented individualized support and cushioning for every foot, to enable athletes to perform at their best. Walking into an Adidas store, running briefly on a treadmill and instantly getting 3D printed running shoe, this is the aim of Adidas 3D printed Futurecraft.