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By 5 August 2020 | Categories: news

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UPDATE: The Puma Calibrate Runner will be available in South Africa from 1 October 2020 on PUMA.com and at PUMA Select Stores for R3 299.

It’s always interesting to see what a sports brand can come up with when put in a room with a bunch of scientists. Puma, as part of a sponsored research collaboration with MIT Design Lab, has created XETIC, a cushioning technology that combines the world of mechanical cushioning and foam.

While the futuristic visible technology of XETIC may look like 3D printing at first, XETIC is not made of plastic but rather polyurethane foam. According to Puma, XETIC takes its name from “auxetic materials”, structures which behave in a certain way when they are subjected to mechanical stresses such as compression. For XETIC, this means the cushioning provides excellent comfort for all wearing occasions, according to Puma.

This new cushioning tech will first be showcased in a shoe called the Puma Calibrate Runner, a general wear shoe that should provide comfort and style as streetwear, while also being able to withstand a run or gym session.

Puma notes how it worked alongside MIT Design Lab and a runner community to analyse individual running specifics, such as pressure points. They then took the data to develop a specifically shaped structure that allows for progressive cushioning. The result was a structure shaped like the horizontal number 8 (seen in the midsole), which is characteristic for the XETIC.

“Puma’s innovation department teamed up with MIT Design Lab because we needed their high expert engineering capabilities,” said Romain Girard, senior head of Innovation at Puma. “MIT has computer simulation possibilities, which enabled us to see the behaviour of the material and quickly find the optimal structure for calculated cushioning.” During the press conference he also noted how the Calibrate Runner is best suited for shorter runs.

Puma’s new Calibrate Runner featuring XETIC technology will be available in Europa starting 15 August, with no release date for South Africa announced yet. It is set to retail that side for €140.

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