Graphene hiking boots unveiled by inov-8 and the University of Manchester

British brand inov-8 and the University of Manchester have unveiled the world’s first graphene hiking boots.

Graphene, which is just one atom thick, is the world’s strongest material. It is 200 times stronger than our strongest steel. It is also a very good conductor of electricity and heat and acts s a perfect barrier. Not even helium can pass through graphene. It is also extremely tough, hard, and surprisingly flexible.

Researchers have infused graphene into the rubber of inov-8’s new hiking boot, ROCLITE. Its outsoles are 50% harder wearing, 50% more elastic, and 50% stronger.

Inov-8, which is collaborating with University of Manchester experts, is the first brand globally to use graphene in sports shoes. Now it is launching graphene hiking boots.

Graphene Hiking Boots
The University of Manchester and inov-8 unveiled the world’s first graphene hiking boots. (Image: adapted from

Two graphene hiking boots

Inov-8 has two graphene hiking boots:

  • The ROCLITE 335. This boot offers greater warmth when its cold with PrimaLoft insulation in the upper shoe.
  • The ROCLITE 345 GTX. This boot has waterproof GORE-TEX protection for hiking adventures when conditions are wet.

The ROCLITE 335 and ROCTLITE 345 GTX weigh 335g and 345g respectively. Both are available to purchase now.

Graphene hiking boots – world’s toughest grip

Inov-8 product and marketing director, Michael Price, said:

”Working with the National Graphene Institute at The University of Manchester, we’ve been able to develop rubber outsoles that deliver the world’s toughest grip.”

“The hiking and outdoor footwear market has been stagnant for many years and crying out for innovation. We’ve brought a fresh approach and new ideas, launching products that will allow hikers, fast-packers and outdoor adventurers to get more miles out of their boots, no matter how gnarly the terrain.”

Graphene hiking boots – just the start

National Graphene Institute member, Dr. Aravind Vijayaraghavan, a Reader in Nanomaterials at the University of Manchester, said:

“Using graphene we have developed outsole rubbers that are scientifically tested to be 50% stronger, 50% more elastic and 50% harder wearing.”

“But this is just the start. Graphene is a such a versatile material and its potential really is limitless.”

Lighter top-performing shoes

Ian Bailey, CEO of inov-8, said:

“Last summer saw a powerhouse forged in Northern England take the world of sports footwear by storm. That same powerhouse is now going to do likewise in the hiking and outdoors industry.”

“We won numerous awards across the world for our revolutionary use of graphene in trail running and fitness shoes, and I’m 100% confident we can do the same in hiking and outdoors.”

“Mark my words, graphene is the future, and we’re not stopping at just rubber outsoles. This is a four-year innovation project which will see us incorporate graphene into 50% of our range and give us the potential to halve the weight of shoes without compromising on performance or durability.”

Graphite, from which graphene is produced, was first mined in the Lake District in Northern England over 450 years ago. Inov-8, which is also from the same area, now sells in sixty-eight countries.

Video – Graphene