Breaking away from the footwear industry's 3D printing gridlock, Adidas announces Futurecraft 4D, a collaborative project with Carbon that crafts midsoles using light and oxygen—or Digital Light Synthesis.
Born from 17 years of running data, the Futurecraft 4D midsole is the result of a process that eliminates the need for traditional prototyping or moulding. However, unlike standard manufacturing technology, Digital Light Synthesis allows Adidas to create product that addresses the needs of each athlete in regards to movement, cushioning, stability and comfort. Carbon's programmable resin platform also offers unparalleled performance with respect to material durability and elastomeric responsiveness.
“With Digital Light Synthesis, we venture beyond limitations of the past, unlocking a new era in design and manufacturing," said Eric Liedtke, adidas Group Executive Board Member Responsible For Global Brands. "One driven by athlete data and agile manufacturing processes. By charting a new course for our industry, we can unleash our creativity-transforming not just what we make, but how we make it.”
With the introduction of Futurecraft 4D, Adidas says it's officially departing 3D printing. The process is said to overcome some of its predecessors shortcomings, which will allow Adidas to gets product to consumers faster than ever. Three hundred Futurecraft 4D sneakers will be released this month for friends and family, followed by more than 5,000 pairs for retail this Fall/Winter. Adidas hopes to have 100,000 pairs available by the end of 2018.