A new shoe from Nike designed to help athletes maintain optimal traction on football turf is the first to feature a 3D printed plate.
The cleats are on the market as the Nike Vapor Laser Talon, weighing in at just 5.6 ounces. Designers worked with trainers as well as long time partner and gold medal sprinter Michael Johnson.
According to Nike, the plate uses selective laser sintering (SLS) technology, a system of high-powered lasers that fuses small particles of materials into a 3D shape. The new technology allows designers to engineer shapes that aren’t even within the realm of possibilities on traditional machines. And any design updates that need to be made can now happen within hours instead of months.