The French manufacturer will use a HP Jet Fusion 5200 system to produce approximately 1,000 pairs of bespoke, lightweight orthopaedic insoles per month, made from bio-sourced PA11 thermoplastic. The company says the technology will allow it to sustain competitive pricing, improve its productivity and significantly reduce manufacturing lead times compared to traditional methods of production.
Currently XFeet’s end-to-end process starts with taking a 3D scan of the patient’s feet using its in-house developed XFOne scanner. The scan is then fed into an online platform which generates the custom insoles based on the wearer’s unique morphology and movement, ready for 3D printing.
XFeet is said to have spent the last seven years working with healthcare systems to develop this 3D technology. By directly involving hospitals and health centres in the development process, XFeet says it has been able to deliver a product that is accessible throughout the entire public health system and using the accompanying online platform, healthcare professionals are able to access patient files from anywhere in the world. So far, around 100 podiatrists are said to be using XFeet’s technology within their practice.
XFeet is the latest in a line of customers in footwear and podiatry sectors to adopt HP’s additive manufacturing technology for production. Las year HP announced a collaboration with major sportswear brand New Balance and insole specialist Superfeet to deliver customised 3D printed footwear for consumers while previous partnerships have included Brooks Running Company to develop personalised running footwear, and the NFL to provide personalised footwear recommendations.
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