Timberland to use ion-mask™ technology in new footwear styles for S’11
October 1, 2010
The Timberland Company, a leading global outdoor brand, has signed-up to use P2i’s revolutionary ion-mask™ liquid repellent nano-coating, to create a new generation of footwear that will transform traditional expectations of weather protection, comfort and performance.
P2i’s ion-mask™ technology works by applying a nanoscopic protective polymer layer to the whole shoe, on which water forms beads and simply rolls off, instead of being absorbed. Because ion-mask™ gives the whole shoe (including different materials, seams and fastenings) superior water repellency, it delivers two crucial benefits: one, it stops external water getting in and two, it encourages evaporated perspiration to flow out. As a result, shoes dry out more quickly, won’t get heavier over time, and maintain the natural airflow of their construction material. By optimizing temperature and ‘breathability’ for feet, ion-mask™ will ensure that these Timberland shoes and boots keep feet more comfortable and dry even in rainy conditions.
Users can’t see or feel ion-mask™ because it is one thousand times thinner than a human hair. However, because the protective layer is molecularly bonded to the whole shoe surface it is extremely durable. In practice, ion-mask™ lasts as long as the shoe material itself and is not compromised by everyday flexing during wear. Plus, by resisting the absorption of water, ion-mask™ helps guard against stains and dirt residue.
John Healy, General Manager of Timberland’s Invention Factory, comments: “As a leader in waterproof and water-resistant footwear, Timberland is constantly searching for new technologies to improve our products and the way they perform in the outdoors. ion-mask™ hit our radar as we were looking to expand our canvas offerings for spring 2011. With ion-mask™, we are able to offer truly breathable, summer-weight canvas shoes that are super water- and stain-repellant. It’s an exciting development for anyone looking to spend time outdoors next spring.”
ion-mask™ technology will be used in a total of 17 Timberland footwear skus globally, across both men’s and women’s collections. Set to debut in Spring 2011, styles include premium canvas and leather boots and shoes, as well as high performance mesh and leather boat shoes for men called the Formentor.
Stephen Coulson, CTO at P2i, comments: “We’re honored that a company like Timberland, with such a strong and unique reputation as a true footwear innovator, has committed to work with us. It is an extremely powerful endorsement and validation of our revolutionary ion-mask™ liquid-repellent nano-coating. Old approaches simply cannot match the amazing levels of performance that ion-mask™ has been shown to deliver.”
Notes for Editors
P2i is the world leader in liquid repellent nano-coating technology. It was established in 2004 to commercialize liquid-repellent treatments developed by the UK’s Ministry of Defence. Now on a commercial scale, P2i’s patented process has been successfully applied to a wide range of products in a wide range of markets including lifestyle, electronics, military and institutional, life sciences, energy and filtration.
In consumer sectors, the presence of P2i’s technology is indicated either by ion-mask™, its brand for footwear, outdoor clothing and accessories, or Aridion™, its brand for electronics.
How the P2i technology works
P2i’s technology works by applying a nanometer-thin polymer layer over the entire surface of a product. Using an ionized gas (plasma) this layer is molecularly bound to the surface and will not leach away. The process confers superior oil and water repellency by reducing the surface energy to ultra-low levels – down to one third that of PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene). In footwear and textile applications, P2i’s technology also minimizes liquid absorption from outside elements and evaporated perspiration.
Tests show that P2i's patented nano-coating technology can deliver performance benefits for a wide range of materials, including polymers, metals, fabrics, leather, ceramics, glass and paper. Even complex, 3D objects incorporating several different materials can be treated successfully with the P2i process: from footwear to hearing aids, bio-consumables to filtration.
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