This project originated from a two week workshop called "digital fabrication". The target was to analyze the human body and find a interesting function which could be used for an everyday product. I focused on the human muscle and its properties. In a second step I tried to imitate the movement of the muscle in a simple way. After quite some research I found a material called "Nitinol". It's a shape memory alloy of Titanium and Nickel. It comes in form of a wire which can be formed as wished. As soon as the desired shape has been found the wire is heated up to 500 degrees. The alloy can then "remember" this shape. So if its deformed it can then be heated up again to about 80 degrees and so returns to its primary state.
I then used these properties for a concept shoe. The nitinol wire is woven over the surface of the shoe. If the user would like to put on the shoe he simply pulls the opening of the shoe apart and slips his foot in. As soon as the foot puts pressure on to the sole the wire gets a short electric impulse to heat them up. They then go back to there original shape and fit the shoe perfectly to the foot.
For a Demonstration of the nitinol wire please watch the video below.