Viscoelastic Pads Convert Motion to Heat

DN Staff

September 10, 2009

1 Min Read
Viscoelastic Pads Convert Motion to Heat

Golden Mousetrap 2009 Winner

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Silent Feet uses an advanced polymer technology to absorb vibrations caused by appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines. The material, called Sorbothane, is said to have achieved shock absorption levels of up to 94.7 percent.

Sorobothane is a thermoset,polyether-based polyurethane that has a high damping coefficient and maintainsits property over a wide temperature range. Its unique effectiveness derivesfrom the fact that it's a solid that flows like a liquid under load and retainsexcellent memory. Other polyurethanes and rubber are one-dimensional underload. Sorbothane's visco-elastic properties mimic human flesh. The elasticproperties of rubber return energy to the system. The material is custom moldedusing the resin transfer molding process at Sorbothane's manufacturing locationin Kent, Ohio.Another interesting aspect of the process is its use as a middle, or"constrained" layer, between two structural layers, or as an "extensional"layer on top of a structural layer. It's produced in a durometer range from 25to 85 Shore "00" Scale.

Sorbothane, first developed in1982, has been widely used as a shoe insole, as well as for a variety ofengineering applications. Silent Feet are newly engineered pads that featuretwo "easy-slide" rear feet and two "super-sticky" front feet.

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