The concept of adaptive tires is taking shape in the world of industrial engineering. Technology unveiled at this year’s Hanover Fair in Germany would make changing tires for seasons or road conditions a thing of the past. Since the reality is still far off, it’s safe to say you won’t have year round, versatile tires any time soon. Still, scientists in Germany hope to make it sooner than later.
At the world’s largest industrial fair in April 2012, a team of researchers from the University of Applied Science in Leipzig, headed by Detlef Riemer, revealed the technology they recently patented. The idea is to equip the tire with electronic sensors which would be able to detect different terrain and changing road conditions, such as rain, snow and ice. The tire profiles would raise or widen, even while a car is in motion, to adapt to the conditions.
While “smart tires” are not close to being a product, materials and moving parts are just a couple of the development obstacles to overcome, the concept is developed enough to begin this next phase of technology development.
The idea, if seen through, would make driving through various road and weather conditions safer, as well as having un-calculated benefits on tire wear, vehicle fuel consumption and overall performance and handling.
What will they think of next?