Shock Absorbing Tech for Footwear

Votes: 3
Views: 219

Current shock absorbing technology uses either a foam or gel material. While both are soft and flexible, unless used in a thick manner, they will under time and pressure flatten out resulting in a hard surface. Thickness is an important feature in that the thinner the better for most applications.

In order to achieve the necessary shock absorbing and performance results, gels or foam must be laminated to a secondary substrate to reduce compression. Typically, this has again been another layer of foam or gel. However to reduce compression and improve performance the secondary surface should be constructed so as to have shock absorbing features as well as a flexible base for the top layer of foam or gel.

The best approach to achieve the desire result is a 3D, segmented planar element or lattice system. The height, thickness and spacing of the elements and lattice can be varied by application. Also the elements will contract and expand on pressure acting as a shock absorbing system reducing the impact and pressure on the foam/gel

The TPU used for the dampers is biodegradable and the silicone gel is consdered enert! Which makes the structure environmentally friendly!

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  • ABOUT THE ENTRANT

  • Name:
    Geoff Mccue
  • Type of entry:
    individual
  • Profession:
    Engineer/Designer
  • Geoff is inspired by:
    As we age, our body changes and sometimes for the worse! Arthritis sets in, there is weight gain to contend with, and various other ailments affect our lives. One of the first to feel the effects of age are our feet! There is lots of time, energy and money spent on the soles and uppers of footwear, but it seems like little is spent on the inside. Since I am an "old guy" and spend alot of my time with other older people, I get to share how are bodies are failing us especially our feet. Since I was working on shock absorbing tech for helmets and airless tires, I thought it would be interesting to see if I could design an insole/insert to help my friends and the public in general. That project led me to the design I am submitting now. A layered approach to shock absorption would surely have a positive effect on feet and joints. So after mentioning my project to my friends and family, I had plenty of willing volunteers. Some just wanted comfort, while others were hoping to relieve their plantar fasciitis and neuropathy. So I put my 3d printer to work and developed a structure that when laminated with a silicone gel, produced excellent results! (I could also see this as an option in sports safety equipment and wearables.) Well, everyone of my test subjects are raving about the results. Requests keep coming in by word of mouth to make more. So, now I would like to get the attention of a footwear company to incorporate this technology into their footwear.
  • Patent status:
    patented