|Leading companies from four EU countries
joined forces in this project to develop a new method for designing
and producing orthopaedic shoes. The result is a portable, laser-based
device for obtaining foot measurements in digital form. Information
collected is transmitted to specialised treatment centres where shoes
can then be designed using a CAD/CAM process.
The benefits of the new system are numerous.
Time required to produce a foot cast is reduced from at least three
hours to 20 minutes, leading to significant reductions in costs
and delivery time. Quality will also be improved, insofar as foot
measurements taken using the device are more precise than those
obtained using traditional methods. Users of the device do not have
to be highly specialised.
The project is having a dramatic impact
on what has until recently been a traditional industry. Stylish
footwear is particularly in demand in the orthopaedic sector and
the new method will increase customer choice.