First Graphene is pleased to advise that in conjunction with Steel Blue have manufactured prototype sets of safety boots incorporating PureGRAPH®10.
The boots were made last week at Steel Blue’s Malaga WA factory and incorporated PureGRAPH® into the safety capped boot TPU soles and polyurethane foam innersole.
Full boots and the sole samples will be exposed to extensive laboratory tests which are expected to exceed current industry standards for safety footwear. Following laboratory testing it is anticipated extensive field trials, will be conducted, lasting approximately six months.
The incorporation of PureGRAPH® into a thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) is a major advance for FGR. Previously, the successful dispersion of graphene into a TPU masterbatch has been a major graphene industry issue. Extensive research by FGR has resulted in a manufacturing method which has overcome what was previously seen as a real issue.
While existing TPU’s already possess high abrasion resistance and tensile strength it is anticipated the incorporation of PureGRAPH® will improve mechanical properties while providing additional benefits in thermal heat transfer, chemical resistance and reduced permeability.
FGR will be conducting extensive laboratory tests on the PureGRAPH® infused TPU and polyurethane foam inner sole in Australia and Manchester. Steel Blue safety boot properties are being enhanced by PureGRAPH® in the Metatarsal Guard (Steel Blue’s Met-Guard), which is specially designed to protect the metatarsal area of the foot that extends from the toes. This is a popular choice for mining workers, factory hands and drillers, who often need the extra protection the Met-Guard affords.
The incorporation of PureGRAPH® in the Met-Guard will improve both flexibility and strength of the product.
“The development work with Steel Blue provides yet another example of FGR working on real industrial applications” said Craig McGuckin, Managing Director First Graphene Ltd. “Like FGR, Steel Blue is an Australian company and the world leader in its field of safety boots systems. These developments continue to enhance that reputation.”
Garry Johnson, Chief Executive Officer of Steel Blue said “Steel Blue is committed to developing innovative solutions for our customers. We’re excited by these recent developments with FGR and look forward to delivering these solutions to our market.’’