Industry supplier Leggett & Platt brought in some unusual equipment—two elephants—to test the durability of its SomniGel mattress component. SomniGel is a hollow-column gel that can be used as a comfort layer in beds, where it is designed to relieve pressure, offer support and facilitate airflow.
Before handing the material over to the animal kingdom, Carthage, Missouri-based L&P put SomniGel through 100,000 Rollator cycles, simulating 10 years of use. According to the company, the material lost only 3.5% of its firmness. By comparison, the polyurethane that L&P tested lost 49% of its firmness, latex lost 23% and visco-elastic foam lost 16%.
In an effort to make the results more meaningful to customers, L&P then turned to “a universal symbol of heaviness”—the elephant. Actually, it was two 9,000-pound elephants.
“We wanted to really show manufacturers and retailers that mattresses built with SomniGel won’t take a body impression. Body impressions are the No. 1 reason for mattress returns,” said Mark Kinsley, vice president of marketing for L&P’s Bedding Group. “If our product bounces back after being under the weight of two giant elephants, we’re confident SomniGel will deliver years of consistent, comfortable sleep without losing its shape.”