Goodyear working on Self-inflating tire

Is this the future?

Here’s something we’ve all been waiting for: the self-inflating tire. No more loud compressors, say goodbye to leaky hoses and inaccurate tire gauges. Our friends at the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company read our minds and has developed a system which will allow tires to self-inflate automatically.

Goodyear’s so-called Air Maintenance Technology (AMT) is completely self-contained, without any need for external pumps or electronics, says the tire maker.

“While the technology is complex, the idea behind the AMT system is relatively simple and powered by the tire itself as it rolls down the road,” said Jean-Claude Kihn, Goodyear senior vice president and chief technical officer.

Here is some theory behind the science.

Now before you start scouring the net for the cheapest prices for this new advancement in tire technology, Goodyear has yet to provide any costs, or even an estimate when the technology will become available to the public. However, don’t let that crush your self-inflating sci-fi dreams. Apparently Goodyear has received grants from the United States Department of Energy’s Office of Vehicle Technology to help further development.

Aside from the “cool” factor, keeping your tires at optimal operating pressure delivers lower emissions, longer tire life, enhanced safety and improved vehicle performance. Government research indicates that under-inflated tires result in a 2.5 percent to 3.3 percent decrease in fuel mileage – that’s about 12 cents per gallon at the pump. With gas prices where the are today, that’s just a complete waste of money for something that is very easy to monitor.

Stay tuned for further details. I’ll keep an eye on this topic for a future post. How great would it be if keeping your tires at optimal pressure just meant a quick trip to the corner store for some milk? It’s just one less maintenance issue you will be responsible for in the future.

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