Bridgestone goes airless in tire concept for Tokyo show

Dec 03, 2011 by Nancy Owano report
Bridgestone goes airless in tire concept for Tokyo show

(PhysOrg.com) -- Visitors to the 42nd Tokyo Motor Show are to witness a new breed of airless tires from Bridgestone. Interest in the general press is already humming because of the material, design, and features of the Bridgestone debut on show. The concept tires use recycled thermoplastic, outside tread included. Fittingly colored green, the tires are being promoted for their green advantage of being completely recyclable.

The spokes are made of reusable thermoplastic resin. In design, interest is drawn toward the thermoplastic fins, staggered so that connections to the hub and the rim do not torque and there is no structural breakdown. The tires’ resin spokes radiate from rim to tread. They curve to the left and right to support vehicle loads.

Bridgestone is not the first to experiment with an airless tire concept. Observers point to Michelin’s debut in 2005 of its airless Tweel tires. These were seen with much interest as a novel departure from the traditional wheel hub assembly, though concerns were raised in some quarters about their being noisy and vibrations at high speeds. The name Tweel is a combination of the words tire and wheel. Michelin used polyurethane spokes arrayed in a wedge pattern.

In describing differences between the Michelin and Bridgestone concept, observers say a key contrast is in size of the ribs. Michelin’s tires were viewed as more suitable for military applications—this is not like the Bridgestone concept, which is suited for something more consumer-driven.

Another tire concept innovator has been Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. The company announced in October this year its airless tire concept which relies on mechanical rather than pneumatic support. Yokohama introduced its tire concept earlier this year at a design expo in Japan.

Bridgestone’s airless tires have a deeper structure of plastic ribs than either of the other two approaches, and it has a higher aspect ratio, according to Plastics News.

Obviously, the key benefit for the consumer will be seen in the fact that the Bridgestone tires cannot suffer punctures. On the other hand, these have a way to go before seeing car commercialization.

The tires are in prototype stage only and due for further evaluations. The company has tested the tires, nine inches across, on single seater electric carts in Japan.

Observers see similar uses, at this earlier level, as potential for use in motorized golf carts, lawnmowers and vehicles for the elderly.

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User comments : 44

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SeeShells
3 / 5 (4) Dec 03, 2011
Perfect for people on the Los Angles Freeways who want to run over stop strips.
Callippo
1.9 / 5 (10) Dec 03, 2011
These tires are maybe good for off-road purposes (the ride across mine field in particular), but at the city traffic they suffer with city emergency braking and parking near pavement kerbs, because they're sensitive to the axial stress. At the case of highways they suffer with overheating during long ride instead. It's a typical cheap solution of low durability, which gets quite costly from long-time perspective.
Nerdyguy
2.5 / 5 (11) Dec 03, 2011
Here's hoping they can improve this to the point where it's standard on all cars. I'll open a bottle of bubbly and drink a toast to never having to change a car tire again!
Isaacsname
2.3 / 5 (4) Dec 03, 2011
Now that's like what I had in mind for piezo tires. Put something like that on every 18 wheeler, serious juice. Think about long-haul trucks using the electricity they create in-situ to help keep perishables cool, for ex.

Somebody will come up with a long-life piezo-rubber matrix, or something like this

http://arstechnic...stem.ars
bluehigh
1 / 5 (11) Dec 03, 2011
Somebody will come up with a long-life piezo-rubber matrix


We got a few compounds here at the CSIRO but I'm sworn to secrecy. Just to say .. it can already be done. Why we need to conduct high aromatic gas mixture flow rate analysis and come up with explanations of material structure changes puzzles me. Oh well .. money shower.

S_Bilderback
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 03, 2011
There is a US federal law that states all DOT approved tires need to be black. Not for structural reasons, because the feds get a carbon tax on all tires sold in the US - the carbon is for the color. A few companies have tried alternative colors and quickly informed they could not be sold in the US.
I can see it taking many years getting through the red tape to get any new concept tire approved. The feds have to get their money!
sstritt
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 03, 2011
Those tightly spaced spokes seem ideal for collecting mud, snow, rocks, etc and making the wheel unbalanced.
PhotonX
3 / 5 (2) Dec 03, 2011
Damn. I guess the old 'I had a flat tire' excuse for being late for work is going out the window.
Isaacsname
2.3 / 5 (4) Dec 03, 2011
Somebody will come up with a long-life piezo-rubber matrix


We got a few compounds here at the CSIRO but I'm sworn to secrecy. Just to say .. it can already be done.



I'm sure, I read about all sorts of crazy tech/science all day long, I think we ( humans ) are at the point where we have more things than we know what to do with, in regards to technology. There's a great dis-proportionality growing between things we can produce and how many applications we can find for those same things. The growth of technologies has out-paced us in that respect.

Of course, I realize we cannot cut ourselves out of the capitalism loop by making everything super efficient, it'd be a financial disaster to have something like residential homes completely off grid with bio-electric bacterial sewage systems, etc.

Can't just give every home a Star Trek molecular assembly unit, they never need to buy anything again.

Oh well, it's a fine line we walk.

ABSOLUTEKNOWLEDGE
1 / 5 (14) Dec 03, 2011
how about the antigravity car witch von braun said

we had before we went to the moon?

50 years later its supose to be news airless tire prototype?

are u faking kidding me?
FrankHerbert
3 / 5 (114) Dec 03, 2011
^report abuse

Perfect for people on the Los Angles Freeways who want to run over stop strips.


You need to stop worrying about what your neighbors are doing so much if that was the first thought that leaped to your mind.

Step away from the windows. Yes, that's good. Almost there. Put the binoculars down. Now just close the blind. Close the blind.

CLOSE THE BLIND!

There ya go!
FrankHerbert
3.1 / 5 (114) Dec 03, 2011
I realize we cannot cut ourselves out of the capitalism loop by making everything super efficient, it'd be a financial disaster to have something like residential homes completely off grid with bio-electric bacterial sewage systems, etc.

Can't just give every home a Star Trek molecular assembly unit, they never need to buy anything again.

Oh well, it's a fine line we walk.


Are you serious?!

I think for most people, even the staunch supporters, Capitalism is a necessary evil. (I'm sure there are a few here that will take exception to that. Too bad, they are psychopaths.)

The whole point of the economic themes in Star Trek is that technology will lead to a post-scarcity society which will render Capitalism obsolete. Scholarly papers have been written on this. I'm not absolutely predicting it, but that was Roddenberry's vision.

You are basically saying "we must keep capitalism at all costs, because we already have the best system."

Don't be so sure of that.
FrankHerbert
3 / 5 (112) Dec 03, 2011
I realize we cannot cut ourselves out of the capitalism loop by making everything super efficient...


Just to make a separate point. Is it your opinion that Capitalism *requires* planned obsolescence?

It follows naturally from your post that you believe if products were made sufficiently durable the economic order would fall apart.

Why can't you recognize that as a flaw of capitalism? I'm sure you'll try and deflect this away as me not understanding some obscure point of something that isn't relevant, but seriously, can you acknowledge that there is at least one flaw in Capitalism?

Start there. Acknowledge this one flaw.
barakn
4.8 / 5 (8) Dec 03, 2011
Those tightly spaced spokes seem ideal for collecting mud, snow, rocks, etc and making the wheel unbalanced.

Don't you think there's the slightest possibility you're looking at a cross-section and the actual structure will be covered?
Isaacsname
4.5 / 5 (12) Dec 03, 2011
Of course I acknowledge flaws in capitalism, there's pro's and con's to any economic system, what I am saying is there is an over abundance of technology, and an under-abundance of mind-blowing applications. You seriously think I need a disposable cellphone with 100's of functions I don't use ?
It would be practically pennies in cost were it not for some BS falsely inflated value based on amazing capabilities I have no use for.

I'm a staunch supporter of capitalism actually, you think I've managed million dollar a year restaurant businesses and designed/built/marketed my own products in the consumer arena without some inkling of how things work ?

Um, ...no
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (3) Dec 03, 2011
I'll open a bottle of bubbly and drink a toast to never having to change a car tire again!

Since you have to change these tires when the tread is gone you'll need to change tires with these exactly as often as you would with the conventional kind

Uunless you've been getting flat tires - but I think that is such a scarce occurence nowadays that it can be discounted for countries with minimal road standards. for developing countries, off roaders, explorers and military vehicles this might be of great use, though.
BillFox
1 / 5 (3) Dec 03, 2011

I'm a staunch supporter of capitalism actually, you think I've managed million dollar a year restaurant businesses and designed/built/marketed my own products in the consumer arena without some inkling of how things work ?

Um, ...no


You think bragging online might be like seeing who can shout "I'm retarded" the loudest...?
MorituriMax
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 03, 2011
All the products are free shipping,

Dude check your grammar, that should be "All the products are the free shipping," you russian spamming waste of air, you.
Isaacsname
3 / 5 (2) Dec 03, 2011

I'm a staunch supporter of capitalism actually, you think I've managed million dollar a year restaurant businesses and designed/built/marketed my own products in the consumer arena without some inkling of how things work ?

Um, ...no


You think bragging online might be like seeing who can shout "I'm retarded" the loudest...?


No, but pointless off-topic comments might fall under that category :P
FrankHerbert
3.1 / 5 (108) Dec 03, 2011
Of course I acknowledge flaws in capitalism, there's pro's and con's to any economic system,

This was not at all evident from your earlier post, but OK.
what I am saying is there is an over abundance of technology, and an under-abundance of mind-blowing applications.

Ok, true. I guess since the laser there has been the phenomenon of the "invention without a purpose." Would you prefer we never bothered to invent the laser because we hadn't figured out melamine foam is an excellent abrasive cleaner?
You seriously think I need a disposable cellphone with 100's of functions I don't use ?

Huh?
It would be practically pennies in cost were it not for some BS falsely inflated value based on amazing capabilities I have no use for.

I guess this is a criticism against the Apple business model? I agree if so.
I'm a staunch supporter of capitalism actually

I'd label myself a supporter of it, but it's obviously a "best of the worst" situation. We will do better.
FrankHerbert
3.1 / 5 (108) Dec 03, 2011
Ok, true. I guess since the laser there has been the phenomenon of the "invention without a purpose." Would you prefer we never bothered to invent the laser because we hadn't figured out melamine foam is an excellent abrasive cleaner?

This may have come off as snarky or confusing. I was simply trying to provide a real world counter argument to your point that "there is an over abundance of technology, and an under-abundance of mind-blowing applications."

It was a few years after the invention of the laser that anyone figured out a use for it. They didn't start to appear in grocery stores and everyday applications for a decade or two after their invention. Maybe longer, I'm going from memory here. Precision isn't important for this point.

I'm pretty sure melamine foam predates the laser. Melamine foam has been used in sound proofing for quite a while. It wasn't until about 2000 that someone figured out it makes an excellent cleaner (magic erasers).
FrankHerbert
3.1 / 5 (108) Dec 03, 2011
We will discover new "apps" for long existing technologies. I don't see why this is causing you to disparage those seeking to develop new technologies.

The point is that you can't expect inventors, engineers, or whoever to squeeze every last "application" out of an invention before moving on to a new one.

Maybe that wasn't the point you were trying to make. It's the point I extrapolated from your posts though.
CHollman82
1.1 / 5 (38) Dec 03, 2011
Airless tires to the subtleties of capitalism in 10 seconds flat.
ChaosRN
5 / 5 (1) Dec 04, 2011
saw something very similar to this on an Aussie show called "Beyond Tomorrow" much earlier than 2005. In fact that show had several different "in the near future" products that still have not come to market, ex: a micro-organism that 'eats' oil on water (oil spills), a foam that reduces the amount of H2O needed to fight fires and when applied to the surface before the fire 'arrives', prevents it from catching. a machine/process that recycles plastic car parts and foam rubber producing usable oil, without putting PCBs into the air.
but where are these products? buried in someone's safe, and not being used to our advantage, because someone (the 1%?) will not profit.
CHollman82
1.1 / 5 (39) Dec 04, 2011
Those tightly spaced spokes seem ideal for collecting mud, snow, rocks, etc and making the wheel unbalanced.


/facepalm

That's a cutaway illustration... a cross-section...
Kedas
1 / 5 (1) Dec 04, 2011
Depending on the load of the car you have to change the pressure for better operation, air makes that easy to change, I don't see an easy way there since it's mechanical. The air tire seems like a better invention except for punctures.
Callippo
1 / 5 (1) Dec 04, 2011
That's a cutaway illustration... a cross-section.
It isn't. You should check your mental resources more carefully...

http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/02072/bridgestone-airles_2072241i.jpg
Noumenon
3.8 / 5 (67) Dec 04, 2011

Abuse of comment rules:

FrankHerbert, uses the following screen names to rate multiple one's, and rates himself multiple  5's.

Libtard | ryggesogn3 | gregor2 | CManhole82 | DenseAetherTheory | Pirouline | PetiteAmerican PaoloIlTipoBasso | Fagamemnon
Isaacsname
not rated yet Dec 04, 2011
Frank, I think you and I actually see eye-to-eye, there's a fair bit lost in translation online :P it's always hard to tell someone's stance on complex issues from a few cursory statements.

As far as innovations and inventing ~ Most of my friends earned degrees, some even teach, but in the course of conversations and bouncing ideas off each other, I see that they are just as prone to making fallacious statements about what can or can't be done, I know because I fact check everything constantly, myself included.

If I listened to people when they said something won't work, or can't be done, I'd never accomplish anything.

If I took to heart their statements in regards to science and engineering as sacrosanct, I'd never learn anything.

If I didn't do anything because I didn't learn anything because I listened to people who didn't know either, I'd be a fool, degree or no degree.

..sigh, back to topic, I wonder if these types of tires will be suitable for re-treading or repair ?


Max_Bin
not rated yet Dec 04, 2011
another old idea. I think they need to read up on the PAX tires that were on cars a few years ago,they failed because the cost and difficultly of service. Unless these are going on some 500,000 dollar car then just say no.
Nik_2213
not rated yet Dec 04, 2011
Putting these on lawn-buggies and sack-trucks instead of current 'go-flats' should corner the market. I, for one, am tired of having to re-inflate my sack-truck's tyres each time I need it...
hyongx
5 / 5 (2) Dec 04, 2011
If they made these for bicycles, I would buy one in a flash. I think it would be easier to make bicycle tires because they are subject to significantly lower loads/pressures/speeds.
Nerdyguy
5 / 5 (1) Dec 04, 2011


Are you serious?!


Always.

I think for most people, even the staunch supporters, Capitalism is a necessary evil.


Wrong.

(I'm sure there are a few here that will take exception to that. Too bad, they are psychopaths.)


Wow, the old "anyone who disagrees with me has a mental problem" argument. Yes, that's a classic. It's quite clear that your maturity level was stunted. Based on most of your posts, I'd place you at right around 12-13.

You are basically saying "we must keep capitalism at all costs, because we already have the best system."


Don't be so sure of yourself there bucko. Not everyone believes that just because it's an imperfect model, we should try to denigrate it at every turn. And, not everyone believes that it's the end-all/be-all. But, it's by far and away the best we have at present. I'm a Star Trek fan too, but I try to keep in mind that it's FICTION.
Nerdyguy
1.6 / 5 (14) Dec 04, 2011
About those tires. That's not a cross-section, and it's not meant for a full-size automobile (yet).

"The concept tires are very small at only a 9-inch diameters so, Bridgestone is only testing the tires on a small one-seat car that elderly people in Japan favor."

http://technabob....s-tires/

You're welcome PhysOrg.
Nerdyguy
1 / 5 (12) Dec 04, 2011
I'll open a bottle of bubbly and drink a toast to never having to change a car tire again!

Since you have to change these tires when the tread is gone you'll need to change tires with these exactly as often as you would with the conventional kind

Uunless you've been getting flat tires - but I think that is such a scarce occurence nowadays that it can be discounted for countries with minimal road standards. for developing countries, off roaders, explorers and military vehicles this might be of great use, though.


Not on the side of a highway in the middle of the night after a blowout. I don't change my own tires. In fact, I've never met anyone who does. We're talking inconvenient flats here.
FrankHerbert
3 / 5 (100) Dec 04, 2011
No there is actually quite a bit of reason to believe Pirouette has some sort of detachment from reality.

This is a website that if it isn't his(or hers) he is in a relationship with the author and openly evangelizes the material here. Look at the pictures on that site and tell me if you see any "Mars Critters".

When you say no, which you will, I will not claim you have a mental disorder.

However, you attacking my maturity and even going so far as to ascribe to me an age of 12-13, reflects ironically upon you.

Noumenon has a history of this, although you usually limits it to political criticisms. "Only little girls believe in liberalism!"

You wouldn't happen to be an alt of his?
Member since: October 12, 2011, 8:08 am
You joined about the same time he started crying about "TEH ONES" that I supposedly spend all day dolling out.

Be less obvious with your next puppet account.
FrankHerbert
3 / 5 (100) Dec 04, 2011
Oh here is Pirouette (or his girlfriend's) website: http://www.marscr...pot.com/

I forgot to link it. Tell me that is the product of a healthy mind. He/she is literally seeing things that aren't there. Literally. It's not a stretch for me, and it's also not a political criticism to claim Pirouette has a mental disorder. However it is a political criticism to point out that only Conservatives seem keen on defending them because he happens to occasionally hit on their talking points while spouting off his madness.

That doesn't bode well for your ideology. You shouldn't have to defend every crank that comes around.
NickFun
5 / 5 (1) Dec 04, 2011
This ought to prevent those nasty cops from trying to blow out my tires!
TheQuietMan
3 / 5 (2) Dec 04, 2011
I'm more interested in the catastrophic failure modes. I'm not going to assume it can not be worse than a blow out, I would like real data on it before passing judgment.

Or has none of you other science majors hit a curb before?
Nerdyguy
1 / 5 (12) Dec 05, 2011
When you say no, which you will, I will not claim you have a mental disorder.


Really, Franky, do you think anyone is in need of your approval of our mental state?

However, you attacking my maturity and even going so far as to ascribe to me an age of 12-13, reflects ironically upon you.


This is because you don't understand irony. You, Frank, are a nutbag who gets his rocks off by denigrating others.

You're one and only problem with me is the fact that I've disagreed with you in the past. It's why you follow me around and vote "1"s with your aliases.

You wouldn't happen to be an alt of his?
Member since: October 12, 2011, 8:08 am


Not entirely clear, but I think you were referring to me.

A) Who gives a flying rat's ass?
B) Any moron -- yes, yes, even you -- could read our posts and see the difference. Including those where I've criticized noumenon.

Now, plz go crawl back under your rock.
CHollman82
1.3 / 5 (13) Dec 05, 2011
Abuse of comment rules:

FrankHerbert, uses the following screen names to rate multiple one's, and rates himself multiple 5's.

Libtard | ryggesogn3 | gregor2 | CManhole82 | DenseAetherTheory | Pirouline | PetiteAmerican PaoloIlTipoBasso | Fagamemnon


He's been doing this for a very long time now. I actually applaud it, I think the comment rating system is useless and broken and perhaps if more people complain about it the owner/operator of this site will get rid of it.

I mean, who's genius idea was it to allow people who have not made a single comment to rate other people's posts? Only active commentators should be able to rate and every time you rate you should be forced to also respond to the post you're rating.

Or just get rid of the damn thing altogether all it does is enforce the argumentum ad populum fallacy.
CHollman82
1 / 5 (12) Dec 05, 2011
I'm more interested in the catastrophic failure modes. I'm not going to assume it can not be worse than a blow out, I would like real data on it before passing judgment.

Or has none of you other science majors hit a curb before?


You know, everyone talks about how bad a "blow out" is... on a recent road trip I blew a baseball sized hole out of my sidewall on a curve at over 80mph and had no trouble bringing my car to a controlled stop on the shoulder of the highway... I don't get it.
Nerdyguy
1 / 5 (12) Dec 05, 2011
I'm more interested in the catastrophic failure modes. I'm not going to assume it can not be worse than a blow out, I would like real data on it before passing judgment.

Or has none of you other science majors hit a curb before?


You know, everyone talks about how bad a "blow out" is... on a recent road trip I blew a baseball sized hole out of my sidewall on a curve at over 80mph and had no trouble bringing my car to a controlled stop on the shoulder of the highway... I don't get it.


Just a guess, based on almost 30 years of driving, but I think the cars and, especially the tires/wheels/brakes/suspension, have gotten much, much better.

If you ever get the chance to drive an old '57 Chevy, it's like night and day.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Dec 07, 2011
Or has none of you other science majors hit a curb before?

No. Why would you hit a curb with your car? There's no real reason to, is there?

You know, everyone talks about how bad a "blow out" is...

I've always wondered about this, too.
Also I have never had one. I don't even know anybody who has ever had one (other than inoff-road sporting events).
People make it out as if a blowout is such a common occurence - but from my experience it's about as common as winning the lottery.

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