3D Printed Footwear

Brooks Running uses HP’s MJF technology to produce Exhilarate-BL shoe

The 3DNA 3D printed midsole delivers a propulsive, bouncy ride

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HP and Brooks Running have entered a new partnership – initially focused on the Brooks Exhilarate-BlueLine running shoes. Footwear developed by the Brooks BlueLine Lab is at the forefront of harnessing technology, biomechanical research, engineering, and design to advance the power of running shoes. The Lab’s newest innovation, the Exhilarate-BL shoe is designed, engineered, and manufactured in partnership with HP, using the company’s 3D printing solution.

The Brooks Exhilarate-BL features 3DNA, a 3D printed midsole technology that delivers a propulsive, bouncy ride. It has also been specifically designed and tuned to groups of sizes based on runner data so that each runner has the optimal cushioning and spring with each stride. HP reportedly independently validated that its Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing technology produces midsoles that deliver higher energy return than 90% of the midsoles in running shoes on the market today.

Brooks will release a limited number of Exhilarate-BL pairs, as part of a test-and-learn program, to select Brooks Wear Testers and Brooks Run Club loyalty members who have synced their wearable devices through Brooks’ platform, in partnership with DashLX. Through wearables, Brooks is able to access runner data including stride lengths, cadences, and other factors influenced by height and weight that will help inform future iterations of Brooks shoes featuring 3DNA.

“Using HP’s 3D printing technology has allowed our design team to fine-tune elements of the midsole right down to the millimeter in ways that wouldn’t have otherwise been possible. As a brand rooted in the science that every individual has a unique motion path, we’re just scratching the surface in terms of how we can change the underfoot experience and use 3D printing to deliver a premium, performance run experience with the potential for greater optimization,” said Nikhil Jain, Director of Footwear Product Line Management and BlueLine at Brooks.

At the same time, Brooks has been able to do so more sustainably by using less material during production. “As a brand, we are focused on doing our part to ensure the shoes that we are building take a lot less energy and virgin material to manufacture,” said Jain. “And from a sustainability perspective, we are
learning how 3D printing can help us on that journey.”

In addition to Brooks, HP has recently partnered with Decathlon, one of the world’s largest sports companies, and Lonati Group, a major textile company, to use HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology for making shoe elements, namely soles, more sustainably.

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746 composites AM companies individually surveyed and studied. Core composites AM market generated over $785 million in 2023. Market expected to grow to $7.8 billion by 2033 at 25.8% CAGR. This new...

Edward Wakefield

Edward is a freelance writer and additive manufacturing enthusiast looking to make AM more accessible and understandable.

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