Infinergy® ‒ expanded TPU
Infinergy® ‒ Small Beads, Big Possibilities
Infinergy® is the world’s first expanded thermoplastic polyurethane (E-TPU). The closed-cell, elastic particle foam combines the properties of TPU with the advantages of foams, making it as elastic as rubber but lighter.
The World's First Expanded Thermoplastic Polyurethane (E-TPU)
The elastic particle foam Infinergy® can be used anywhere, where a combination of low weight, excellent mechanical properties, and long-term durability is needed. Infinergy® panels can be processed on standard slitting lines, die cutting and water-jet cutting machines.
Infinergy® can be used anywhere a combination of low weight, excellent mechanical properties and good long term durability is required.
- In the sports and leisure sector (floor coverings, e.g. for playgrounds or running tracks, bicycle tires,paddle tennis rackets bicycle saddles)
- In mechanical engineering (e.g. as cushioning elements and buffers in industrial compressor)
- In the shoe industry
Benefit of this Tough Material in Various Fields of Application:
Like its starting material TPU, Infinergy® is noted for having high elongation at break, tensile strength and abrasion resistance as well as good chemical resistance. In addition, the innovative particle foam remains highly elastic and soft over a wide temperature range.
The feature of Infinergy® that is particularly striking is its high resilience. Tests of the resilience elasticity under ISO 8307 (the ball rebound test) and under DIN 53512 (using a defined pendulum hammer) show that Infinergy® achieves a rebound of over 55%. This is therefore significantly higher than comparable particle foams such as expanded polypropylene (EPP) at 30%, ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) at 37% or expanded polyethylene (EPE) at 50%. Infinergy® does not lose its excellent resilience even under a continuous load.
Dynamic mechanical analysis has shown that, even at extremely low temperatures of -20°C (-4°F), Infinergy® still has a low dynamic modulus, is very soft and stretchy and thus does not go stiff.
- Dynamic loads of 250 kPa and 5 cycles/second
- Thickness of the test piece after 40,000 cycles:
EPE: 22 percent (9 mm), Infinergy®: 93 percent (37 mm)
- Density: 30 kg/m³ (EPE), 265 kg/m³ (Infinergy®)
Elastic Even Under Continuous Load and over Wide Temperature Range
High-frequency fatigue test:
--> Dynamic mechanical analysis: Infinergy® stays elastic up to minus 20°C.
In principle, Infinergy® can be processed on the same molding machines which are designed for processing of expanded polypropylene (EPP). A steam chamber pressure of at least 5 bar is necessary. During processing, the steam pressures are usually in the range of 1.6 to 2.2 bar, depending on the geometry and density of the molding. Both crack splitting and pressure filling are possible methods that can be applied here. Appropriate injection systems should be used.
In addition, because polyurethane binders adhere so well to Infinergy®, there are other processing techniques such as gluing and foam sealing of the beads. This procedure enables large-scale processing of Infinergy®.
Converters can process panels made from Infinergy® on conventional splitting machines, punches and water jet cutting machines.
Infinergy® is compliant with the RoHS directive and does not have to be labeled under dangerous goods regulations.
Information on other regulations, e. g. GADSL, will be provided on request.
Infinergy® is also recyclable.
The German sports equipment manufacturer adidas uses Infinergy® in its innovative “Energy Boost” running shoe. As the material used in the midsole, Infinergy® makes the shoe comfortable to wear and delivers excellent running properties. The sole springs back into its original shape immediately after impact: thanks to this high rebound effect resulting from the resilience of the material, runners use up less energy than they did before.
As Infinergy® withstands temperatures of between -20°C (-4°F) and over +40°C (+104°F) without changing its functional properties, the adidas shoe can be used at any temperature - whether in winter or in summer.
Another advantage highlighted by the shoe manufacturer is the great long-term durability of the material which, just like the other properties, is significantly better than that of conventional midsole materials.
In the new Kettler Track S10 treadmill, Infinergy® is used to cushion the running deck: this creates an elastic, high-rebound surface that returns energy to the runner and extends endurance in training. Infinergy®’s consistency under dynamic loads minimizes impact to the joints, regardless of running speed and style.
In its new CX Series tennis rackets, Dunlop's upgraded Sonic Core technology employs Infinergy® to provide increased rebound height and ball speed vs. Dunlop’s original Sonic Core while reducing vibrations throughits damping properties. The addition of Infinergy® located at the two and ten o’clock areas of the rackethas helped contribute to designing the CX Series forplayers focused on strong cushioning, high rebound, speed and lightweight performance.
In 2017, Ergon made a breakthrough in bicycle saddle technology with their new product built around Infinergy®: the ST Core Ultra. Using Infinergy® as a damper to create a floating dual-shell seat, both ground impact and body pressure are absorbed and isolated through the saddle. This optimises comfort and back protection for pro cyclists, even on long rides in extreme heat or cold.
Infinergy®’s outstanding durability, resilience, and elasticity have been utilised to support and protect wearers of the Wellmaxx range of safety shoes by Germany’s ELTEN. The Infinergy® sole core cushions feet even under challenging conditions and extended periods of wear, helping to reduce fatigue and prevent joint problems.
As a sports flooring, Infinergy® is a low-maintenance, high-performance surface.It is durable across a wide temperature range and chemical-resistant, even while offering the best rebound among particle foams. As Infinergy® does not contain heavy metals or require solvents for installation, it fully meets stringent safety and environmental standards.