Airless Tire Concept Introduced by Bridgestone
by Tire Guy
Bridgestone Airless Concept Tire
In late 2011 Bridgestone made public something that they're working on: an air-free tire which is puncture-proof. The product is still in the developmental stage but they have been testing the use of these tires on small single-person vehicles which are used in Japan mostly for older people.
The prototype wheels are 9 inches in diameter and use spokes made from a thermoplastic-resin. These radiate from the rim to the tread and curve to both sides, left and right so as to maximize the support. Because the tire is designed to not use air, punctures would not result in flat tires.
In addition, the tire would use materials which are completely recyclable.
Bridgestone made it clear that these tires are still being tested and that they plan to extensively study their performance on various kinds of vehicles before they are put on sale for public use.
This, of course, is not the first time air-less tires have been attempted. Several years ago, Michelin introduced what they called the Tweel tire and was awarded a gold medal for innovation in 2006 at Intermat, an international exhibition of equipment, machinery and techniques for the construction and materials industries, which is held every three years in Paris, France.