The HP senior exec, Edward Ponomarev, recently showed off a pair of HP-3D Printed running shoe prototypes. The shoes are the latest 3D printing being applied to the custom midsole and insole production. They are the first functional running shoes with 3D printed parts and feature lightweight uppers ensuring excellent cushioning. HP plans to create affordable custom made and fitted footwear by 3D scanning and printing technology. The FitStation Powered by HP is a state-of-the-art technology that scans the foot, analyzes gait, and creates a digital 3D model of the foot. The model is then sent to an HP 3D printer, which creates a unique insole that can be worn with any shoe. HP’s 3D printing footwear approach is very much based on TPU materials for its technology.
HP uses a multi-purpose thermoplastic polyurethane power explicitly designed for HP’s 5200 series Multi Jet Fusion printers. The materials used to ensure strong, flexible, and durable part performance for typical applications that include footwear. Also helping with the 3D printed footwear business is the Estane 3D TPU M95A materials, which was specifically formulated to provide efficient printing compared to other elastomers. Currently, Estane and other TPU materials will be brought to increase HP’s productivity of their Jet Fusion 5200 series 3D printers. These innovations will not only bring us beautiful footwear from HP but also very functional pairs of shoes.