Springfield , Mass. – New data suggests that Spalding’s line of Neverflat® soccer balls stay fully inflated for years, not just months or 10 times longer than conventional balls, as was originally promised.
“The data really surprises us,” Dr. Don Sandusky, inventor of the Neverflat® technology said. “The chart shows that while three different soccer ball prototypes started at the same pressure, only the Neverflat® balls pressure stayed consistently high during the 480 days of testing. We passed the 480 day mark and then we had a great opportunity to donate the balls to a charitable organization promoting urban soccer, so we don’t know exactly how long they are holding match pressure.”
Sandusky invented the Neverflat® technology in 2006 in response to leakage and seepage problems that occur at the ball’s surface level and deep inside its membrane. The technology was licensed to Spalding who applied it to basketballs, footballs and volleyballs in addition to soccer balls.
“Our purpose was to improve the pressure retention of sports balls without changing playability,” Sandusky said. “We also wanted to fix some of the inherent design flaws with the inflation valve.”
He explains how the valve is always a little bit open, which allows dirt to get into the inflation valve hole. When a typical ball goes flat and an inflation needle is inserted to give it more air, the dirt jammed in that inflation valve gets pushed further inside, prying the valve open a little bit and causing air to leak back out.
“Our Neverflat® balls have specially designed replaceable plugs to keep the valve clean and seal in the air,” Sandusky said. “Still, we never expected the results to be this good. We’re working hard to figure out what’s making the technology work so well in these soccer balls.”
For more information on Spalding’s Neverflat® products, visit http://Spalding.com. You can also contact Spalding’s senior product manager, Paul Sullivan, at JPrichard@Spalding.com or 270-746-0600 ext. 4028.