WNDR Alpine: Pioneering Biobased Technologies in Outdoor Gear

WNDR Alpine: Pioneering Biobased Technologies in Outdoor Gear
WNDR Alpine: Pioneering Biobased Technologies in Outdoor Gear

Salt Lake City-based WNDR Alpine is redefining the outdoor industry with its high-performance, eco-friendly ski equipment.

The company’s innovation lies in its application of biology, polymer chemistry, and materials science to achieve unique performance advantages in its backcountry skiing and riding gear.

Partnering for Performance: Checkerspot Collaboration

WNDR Alpine collaborates with Checkerspot, a group of scientists and engineers, to produce biobased materials that offer a slew of performance benefits.

Utilizing Checkerspot’s microalgae platform, WNDR’s gear benefits from enhanced strength-to-weight ratios, improved torsional rigidity, and better dampening properties.

These biobased materials not only confer performance advantages but also reduce the environmental impact and resource inputs required for production.

Innovative Materials: From Algal Core to Algal Wall

Algal Core

The Algal Core, a key innovation, is a vertically laminated core comprising a blend of microalgae-derived polyurethane and domestically sourced aspen.

The polyurethane component contains 41.58% biobased content based on ASTM 6866-18 Method B and can be customized for different wood species.

It is designed for lightweighting, enhanced damping, and can withstand common layup techniques.

Algal Wall

Additionally, WNDR Alpine’s Algal Wall is a cast urethane sidewall technology that contains 67% biobased content, resulting in improved impact strength and dampening properties.

The Algal Wall boasts 15% greater flexural strength than traditional petroleum-based ABS sidewalls at room temperature, and 60% greater flexural strength at lower temperatures.

Furthermore, this manufacturing process significantly reduces plastic waste and eliminates the need for glue or resin, offering variable thickness and depth based on end-use requirements.

Recycled Components: SpiralMade®

WNDR Alpine has also developed SpiralMade® plate inserts, which are composed of recycled materials generated during their manufacturing processes. These inserts provide 35% better binding screw tension for skis and 5% improved retention for snowboards.

Renewable Energy and Apparel

The company’s commitment to sustainability extends to its manufacturing facility, which is powered by 100% renewable energy.

Furthermore, WNDR Alpine is venturing into apparel using Beyond Surface Technology’s (BST) miDori® Bio Wick technology, a 100% non-petroleum, microalgae-based wicking finish.

Certified by the USDA Biopreferred program, miDori® results in an 80% reduction in carbon footprint compared to traditional wicking finishes.

In Summary

WNDR Alpine exemplifies how innovative approaches to material science can yield sustainable, high-performance outdoor gear.

By leveraging biobased technologies and recycled materials, the company is setting a new standard for both performance and environmental responsibility in the outdoor industry.

With a 100% renewable energy-powered facility and a growing portfolio that even extends into apparel, WNDR Alpine is charting a sustainable course that others in the industry would do well to follow.

About the author
Team BioSourced

Team BioSourced

Researching sustainable biomaterials to replace conventional synthetic products for industrial and manufacturing applications.

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