Thermal and Elastic Performance of Footwear

Presented by Travis Parkman and Arya Hakimian


An athletic sneaker, optimized for comfort and elastic performance to aid running

Whether you are playing sports, working on a job site, or just going for a walk, we need reliable (and comfortable) footwear to get us through the day.  One of the key components of our footwear is the shoe sole; considering for most of us, it is our only connection with the ground for the majority of the day.

Mechanically, it needs to be able to support our weight and protect our feet from hard surfaces and large impacts.  For sports, the sole also needs to be designed to minimize energy loss as we run on it; the shoe sole deforms as it compresses against the ground and needs to store this energy so it can bounce back to its original shape, giving us a ‘boost’. 

MTPS sensor 2020 ASTM D7984 sensor

C-Therm’s Modified Transient Plane Source (MTPS) sensor, able to measure thermal effusivity to quantify the “feel” of a material

However, a shoe sole is not only optimizing our mechanical energy, but also needs to manage our thermal energy.  Whether we are standing still or moving, our body is producing heat, which is absorbed by its surroundings.  If our surroundings cannot dissipate this heat, we get too hot; this can result in negative side effects on our comfort and health.  Therefore, understanding a material’s ability to exchange heat to another surface, can be used to manage temperature and quantify the “feel” of a shoe.

Metravib DMA, able to measure the viscoelastic properties of materials at high forces and frequencies leading to better material characterization

In this webinar, we will quantify the thermal performance of a shoe by measuring the thermal conductivity and effusivity using the Modified Transient Plane Source (MTPS) method.  This analysis will also use Dynamic Mechanical Analysis to measure the viscoelastic properties to quantify its energy loss in different conditions.

For more information on DMA, click here: https://ctherm.com/metravib/


This webinar aired on August 23, 2022 @ 2:00PM GMT-3.

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