By Gary Thomas
Teijin Group's subsidiary, Teijin Fibers is supplying NANOFRONT, a high-strength polyester nanofiber, to New Balance, who will use the product in its running shoe replacement insoles. New Balance Japan will market the insoles and the products will be sold in the company’s directly owned shops in Osaka and Tokyo and also through local sports retail stores.
Running shoe replacement insoles
The polyester nanofiber has exceptional frictional properties and also possesses high diffusion and moisture absorbency for additional comfort. NANOFRONT’s surface has nano-sized bumps, which helps increase frictional force and create a surface area that is considerably greater than that of standard fiber. This leads to extremely higher slip resistance. The high-strength polyester fiber from Teijin has a thickness of only 700 nm (7,500 times smaller than the human hair’s cross section).
The insole using NANOFRONT provides excellent slip resistance, which avoids sliding of a wearer's foot inside the shoe. Thus, the material is ideal for producing insoles. It is also utilized by New Balance Japan to manufacture socks and shoelaces.
The commercial production of NANOFRONT fiber began in 2008 and the company has been developing applications in several areas, such as sportswear, innerwear and industrial materials. Teijin group offers advanced solutions for various applications, including healthcare, environment and energy, safety and protection, information and electronics and sustainable transportation. Its major business areas are high-performance fibers, polyester fibers, resin & plastic processing, films, healthcare and IT.