A shoe for all seasons has arrived. Hamburg-based company IQTEX and BASF, the chemical company, have jointly developed an intelligent and innovative technology which could adapt to suit any weather condition. These shoes allow children to play in rain without wetting their feet, and yet allow sufficient breathable air to reach their delicate feet.
To make this possible, IQTEX processed a special superabsorbing fleece and a trademark of BASF, Luquafleece®, a superabsorbent polyester non-woven material, into an innovative ventilation element known as Vayu Verde, the trademark of IQTEX. The fleece used inside the shoe is absolutely air-permeable in dry weather. During the rainy season, the superabsorbable particles that are present in the fleece, swell and rapidly seal the cavities, making the shoe watertight even under high pressure. Then, as soon as the material integrated into the sole of the shoe dries, it regains its breathability within minutes and the wearer feels a cool and pleasant sensation. “In contrast to conventional functional clothing, shoes made with Vayu Verde technology are not only breathable but, depending on the weather, can be as air-permeable as a cotton T-shirt or as watertight as rain boots,” says Michael Dehn, Managing Director of IQTEX.
The first shoes with this Vayu Verde technology are to be launched in the market this year. IQTEX has already developed the first prototypes together with partners such as safety shoe producer Baak and the Deichmann Group (children’s shoes “Elefanten”). The Vayu Verde technology, besides shoes, could also be used to manufacture jackets, gloves, tents, safety helmets, textiles and sports accessories to achieve optimum ventilation. This technology could also be deployed in electronic devices and medical products.