Nike representatives announced that studded soles for Vapor Laser Talon sports boots will be created using 3D printing technology. The new model should provide maximum grip with the football field and speed performance, which will give athletes even greater stability during training and will open access to new world records. The spiked plate, which is responsible for the reliable adhesion of the foot to the coating, was made using selective sintering (SLS) technology. The technology is the use of lasers for sequential contour melting of layers of powdered polymer. The computer-aided design system that fully controls the 3D printing process is responsible for creating the final model with the required shape: from the intensity of the laser processing of the source material to controlling the supply volume of a new powder layer after the sintering of the previous one is completed. It would take about XNUMX years to create such a sole using standard manufacturing methods, without promoting three-dimensional printing.
The design for Nike designers and technologists is based on the idea of "zero step". This term is usually called the moment of repulsion from the surface to take the first step, which, in turn, set the developers the task of making this action as effective as possible for running stability and maximum rapid acceleration. Nike believes that through the use of SLS technology, athletes will have access to almost individual variations of those studs that can best suit the ergonomics of sports shoes, taking into account the peculiarities of running, foot size, and so on. Also, thanks to 3D printing, carried out by selective sintering, it will be possible to update the design of the sole plate in a few hours, and not months, as it was before.
Innovations and achievements in the field of industrial three-dimensional printing can not only reduce the time costs of individual stages of production, but, according to Nike representatives, reduce the company's financial costs in the future in comparison with the traditional process of creating sports shoes.