Design, development, and construction of a sports mat Joining machine with Resilite Sports Products

Principal investigators: Steve Stumbris, Craig Beal, and Ian Proud

University: Bucknell University

Industry partner: Resilite Sports Products, Inc.

The collaboration between Bucknell and Resilite Sports Products will design, manufacture, and commission a new machine for attaching a polyethylene ‘Zip’ connector to the reinforced vinyl surface of a sports mat. The Zip connectors that join mat sections were developed and patented by Resilite in 2018, but are now threatened because the plastic welding machine used for the process has been discontinued by the original equipment manufacturer. This critical manufacturing process cannot continue if the welder becomes irreparable, threatening the viability of this growing product line. The process is ergonomically challenging for personnel, and the floor space required during the operation creates a production bottleneck. This project will achieve faster, more consistent results with less physical strain on operators.