More than a decade ago, Mike Buchen, the CEO of SKYDEX, was hired by Nike to develop cushioning components for running shoes. The twin-hemisphere technology was patented, and now the geometrically-designed padding is being used to save lives of our military men and women.
The material is made of two layers of hemispheres. On impact, one hemisphere collapses into the other, and it can absorb more energy than most foams out there, Chief Technology Officer Peter Follie says.
Engineers tune the rate of the collapse so that the material, or decking as Buchen calls it, absorbs the amount of energy necessary for it's application, Buchen explained.
"It protects them in about 85 percent of the IEDs they see over there," Follie said.
The military is using SKYDEX in the floors of about 1700 military vehicles, in the troops' mattresses, helmets and knee and elbow pads.
The men and women that use SKYDEX also help design it. Buchen says SKYDEX hires vets directly from Iraq and Afghanistan. Because of their commitment to the troops, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce recently recognized SKYDEX for their participation in the Hiring Heroes Program.
Beyond the military applications, SKYDEX technology is still used in running shoes and a variety of other commercial applications, and their products are 100 percent recyclable and washable.
The company's director of marketing expects SKYDEX to double its revenue in 2012, and they also plan to fill 10 to 12 positions so they can keep up with demand.
More information about working at SKYDEX and their products is available on their website.
(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)