A novel form of elastic titanium has been used to create a squeezable sports bottle that is durable and prevents the liquid from being contaminated by plasticisers and softeners.
A difficulty facing many competitive athletes is the need for a squeezable water bottle that allows for fast, one-handed drinking. Currently, squeezable bottles are mainly made of plastic. This can leach chemicals into the water and can be difficult to get rid of bacteria. As plastic bottles do not last as long as metal, they also contribute to waste. Now, a sports start-up, Keego has developed an ingenious solution. They have designed a squeezable water bottle made from a novel form of elastic titanium. The titanium creates a bottle that is much easier to squeeze than plastic. In a race this could potentially save valuable seconds of drinking time.
Keego’s new bottle has a rounded-off square shape which gives the surface of the bottle an ideal distribution of tension and pressure. It is produced in a process which adds an elastic core to a titanium shell. When squeezed, the pressure is applied evenly across the entire shell. According to Keego, this gives a more even flow rate and makes it much easier to squeeze compared to the stiffer plastic bottles. The shape and high flow rate will allow for drinking without mouth contact, keeping bacterial transfer to a minimum. The bottle also has other benefits of titanium – it is lightweight (140 grams/ 4.9 ounce), and durable and will not impart an off taste to the water.
Keego’s bottle will be produced by a manufacturer of parts for particle accelerators, in a specially-built facility in Denmark. Although the company has received some funding from the Austrian government, the heavy investment required to adapt the technology has led them to seek additional funding on Kickstarter, with a campaign that goes live on March 14th. We have seen a number of innovations in sports equipment, including a snow shovel that doubles as an emergency bivouac, and gear with embedded cameras. What other uses might there be for an elastic metal?