Eagle 360 Concept Tire

Here's a video with more information about the Eagle 360 concept tire.

Posted by The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company on Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Goodyear has introduced two new concept tyres at this year’s Geneva Motor Show, which it says “could literally reshape the future for autonomous cars.” While tyres may not be the most exciting aspect of a car, we reckon that these concepts might have you paying closer attention.

Remember the movie I, Robot starring Will Smith? In the movie, Smith drives an autonomous (with manual override) Audi RSQ sport coupe with spherical tyres, allowing the car to have levels of manoeuvrability far beyond those fitted with conventional tyres.

That’s exactly what Goodyear is attempting to replicate with the Eagle-360 concept. Currently, the tyre is a purely conceptual development, so don’t expect to see a working prototype just yet. However, the idea behind it is really quite clever.

Firstly, the spherical-shaped tyre has a customised design enabled by 3D printed tread design, depending on location and driving habits. Goodyear refers to biomimicry is the inspiration behind the tyre’s tread pattern that mimics that of brain coral and behaves like a natural sponge to absorb bumps. The Eagle-360 is connected to the car by magnetic levitation, which suspends the tyre from the car via magnetic fields.

Within the tyre, there are embedded sensors that are capable of sensing the road conditions, which can then adjust the speed of the vehicle. The data can also be communicated to other vehicles on the road, allowing their vehicles to reposition its tyres for the road ahead. Furthermore, the sensors detect tyre wear and can reposition them to optimise wear and extend mileage.

With the Eagle-360, manoeuvrability gets a major boost allowing the car to move in all directions, contributing to safety for passengers, as well as coping with space limitations such as tight parking lots or city streets.

Goodyear’s next concept is called the IntelliGrip, which looks more like a conventional tyre, but with more technology crammed into it. Here, advanced sensors and specially-designed tread allows the tyre to sense many road conditions, including both surface and weather conditions. These allow an autonomous vehicle to adapt its speed to current conditions.

Other features here include Active-wear technology, which uses advanced active wear technology to assess the condition of the tyre and the vehicle, and custom algorithms for variables such as inflation pressure and tyre temperature. Goodyear is also looking to expand the technology further with enhanced connectivity features such as Electronic Stability Control Systems, Brake Control Systems and Suspension Control Systems.