3D Printed FootwearConsumer 3D PrintingSport

Adidas FUTURECRAFT 4D running shoes are here

AM for footwear mass production is real

Adidas officially released FUTURECRAFT 4D, thus marking the first time a partially 3D printed mass-produced product hits the market. In fact, the world’s first commercial 3D printed running shoe features midsoles crafted using Digital Light Synthesis. This high speed, planar, 3D printing process was introduced by Carbon with its M line of printers and end-use digital materials.

FUTURECRAFT 4D represents the brand’s journey to define the future of craftsmanship by exploring new technology and design. Adidas first unveiled it in April 2017 as a proof of concept in limited numbers for friends and family. Now FUTURECRAFT 4D is launching to the wider public in the New York City area. It is available through Consortium retailers KITH, Packer, and SNS.

“FUTURECRAFT 4D demonstrates the potential of Digital Light Synthesis in unlocking a new era in sport performance design. One driven by athlete data and incomparable precision to provide the best for the athletes, enabling them to make a difference in their run. This innovation changes how we design and free ourselves from limitations of the past. The possibilities of what we can now create with this technology to push the boundaries of performance is truly endless.” Ben Herath, VP Design for adidas Running.

FUTURECRAFT 4D is the future of AM?

Furthermore, the shoe is competitively priced at $300, in line with high-end sports footwear. The brand’s extensive library of athlete running data provided a base for its design. As a result, the FUTURECRAFT 4D midsole is a single component featuring precisely engineered zones that addresses different needs of running. These include propulsion, cushioning, stability, and comfort. The midsole comprises of over 20,000 struts individually tuned to provide more control on energy return. These struts make up three key performance zones.

First, the Heel Zone, a lattice geometry designed to optimized cushioning and absorb first heel impact. Second, the Transition Zone, a seamless bridge design provides a smoother heel to toe transition, with sidewalls supporting and guiding runner through the gait cycle. Finally the Forefoot Zone, a structure designed to propel the runner forward.

In addition, the midsoles unique open structure allows the runner for enhanced breathability underfoot. Primeknit upper adds seamless comfort through a sock-like fit and engineered ventilation zones, while Continental outsoles provide optimal grip.

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, I have built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, I spent 12 years in the United States, where I received my Bachelor of Arts undergraduate degree. As a journalist covering the tech industry - especially the videogame industry - for over 10 years, I began covering the AM industry specifically in 2013, as blogger. In 2016 I co-founded London-based 3D Printing Business Media Ltd. (now 3dpbm) which operates in marketing, editorial, and market analysis & consultancy services for the additive manufacturing industry. 3dpbm publishes 3D Printing Business Directory, the largest global directory of companies related to 3DP, and leading news and insights websites 3D Printing Media Network and Replicatore. I am also a Senior Analyst for leading US-based firm SmarTech Analysis focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets.

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