Olympic track star Usain Bolt is known for his magical gold shoes. Recently, he's been spotted wearing green kicks. Perhaps his recent losses on the run could be remedied with a new pair of 3D-printed gold trainers.
Designer and engineer Luc Fusaro is developing a pair of 3D-printed running shoes with some unusual features. The athlete-specific performance sprint shoes are named "Design to Win." The most eye-catching features are the gold color and the short spikes for added traction.
Spikes are a hot commodity in the world of 3D-printed footwear. We recently ogled some very pointy high heels from a fashion designer, but you wouldn't want to try them out on a 100-meter sprint.
With high-level races coming down to fractions of a second to determine the winner, every little bit of edge helps. Fusaro's shoes are designed to be customized to the athlete.
It starts with a 3D scan of the feet, then the incredibly lightweight shoes are made using the additive manufacturing process of selective laser sintering. This is a form of 3D printing that involves high-powered lasers.
Fusaro already has some Olympic connections. He was chosen to design the podium for the Victory Ceremonies in the London 2012 Olympic Games. He is still fine-tuning the design for his running shoes, so you won't be seeing them on the track this summer.
Fusaro's shoes are an intriguing glimpse into the future of running apparel, when every athlete can get a custom set of sneakers straight from a printer.