With Flyprint, Nike introduces the first 3D-printed textile upper used in performance footwear. The material is created through a process called solid deposit modeling (SDM), in which a TPU filament is unwound from a coil and then melted and laid down in layers. It's a methodology that allows designers to translate athlete data directly onto new textile geometries. That data is computed to create the ideal composition of the material, and subsequently, the final textile. One benefit of performance printing is efficiency, as prototyping is 16-times quicker than any previous manufacturing method.
Flyprint textiles are lighter and more breathable than any of Nike's previous textiles, and there's virtually no friction between the interlaced yarns, allowing for greater precision-tuned containment. The textile also works seamlessly with Flyknit yarns, allowing the two materials to be thermally bond, obviating the need for glue or stitching.
The Nike Flyprint upper debuts on the Nike Zoom Vaporfly Elite Flyprint shoe, created for Eliud Kipchoge, winner of the Berlin Marathon. Kipchoge will run the London Marathon on April 22nd in the Nike Zoom Vaporfly Elite Flyprint. That same weekend, a limited run of the shoes will be sold in London through the Nike App.