Bridgestone's airless tires are designed to never go flat
By Emily Price
December 2, 2011
This week at the Tokyo Auto Show in Japan, Bridgestone showed off its latest development - puncture-less air-free tires. The tires are still in the concept phase, but have been successfully tested on single-person vehicles in Japan traditionally used for elderly people.
The 9-inch wheels have thermoplastic-resin spokes that radiate from the rim to the tread, curving to the left and right for maximum structural support. The tires' solid design doesn't require air, and consequently can't be punctured - so, no more flat tires.
Also interesting is the material the tires are made of, which is entirely recyclable.
Still in the testing phase, Bridgestone plans to heavily evaluate the tires' performance on traditional cars before making them available to the general public.
While certainly interesting, Bridgestone's tires aren't the first we've heard of to go air-free. Airless tire technology has been under investigation for years, with Michelin's airless Tweel tires even winning the Intermat Gold Medal for Innovation in 2006.