Manufacturers innovate to make airless tires a modern automotive design

Tire manufacturers continue to innovate to improve driving comfort. One of the innovations is making airless tires, which have recently been discussed as the future of passenger car tires. One of the manufacturers that participated in developing tires with this technology is Goodyear. The difference, however, is that the airless tires the company is developing are built to support an autonomous delivery robot, Starship. Starship Technologies is a Goodyear Ventures portfolio company that builds and operates a network of more than 1,000 autonomous robots. The functions of this autonomous robot range from carrying and delivering packages, groceries and food directly to customers. Goodyear explained that the manufacture of these tires was in response to Starship's requests for tire health and care. The company then developed a specially designed airless tire to extend tire life and reduce maintenance activities for the robot's delivery fleet. Goodyear and Starship are currently in a field testing phase at Bowling Green State University to evaluate vehicle and tire dependability. Preliminary test data on tires on the vehicle have shown positive results regarding tread, braking and vibration damping.

“We are excited to extend our unique airless tire architecture into new forms of mobility,” said Michael Rachita, Senior Program Manager, Goodyear non-pneumatic tires.

This robot is claimed to make thousands of deliveries every day in all kinds of weather conditions and terrain. In addition to Goodyear, airless tires have also been developed for cars by the Michelin manufacturer under the name Unique Puncture-proof Tire System (Uptis) and exclusively cooperates with General Motors (GM). This French tire manufacturer claims to have developed airless tires since 2005. Then another manufacturer that is also developing airless tires is Bridgestone with a product called QuietTrack. It didn't stop there, the special division of the Indonesian Army in Indonesia had also developed airless tires which were tested on vehicles belonging to soldiers. Airless tires are generally the same as conventional tires, judged by their doughnut-like shape, black in color, and made of rubber. But the difference is that airless tires are not designed to accommodate air, so the design is made hollow on the wall. The hollow structure functions as a buffer between the tire tread and the rim. The structure also functions as a shock absorber at the same time, this will help the suspension absorb shock when it hits a pothole or uneven road.


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