Clever tyre changes its profile, itself

2012-04-23 22:38

Hanover - Are you fed up of having to change your summer tyres for winter tyres at the first sign of snow? Or of being caught out on a long car journey by sudden changes in the weather?

That may soon be a thing of the past, according to a group of researchers at Leipzig university, who are developing the world's first-ever "intelligent" tyre which automatically adapts itself to the prevailing weather conditions even while you are driving.

A team of researchers headed by Detlef Riemer at the University of Applied Sciences in Leipzig unveiled the "adaptive tyre" at this year's Hanover Fair, the world's biggest industrial fair taking place in the north German city this week.

"Today's choice of tyres are always a compromise between the ability to brake and petrol consumption," Riemer said.

"The car driver has to take into consideration every sort of weather condition and you can't change tyres while you're driving."

But Riemer's "adaptive tyre" is equipped with electronic sensors which recognise different sorts of terrain - whether motorway or gravel roads - and whether it's dry, raining or snowing.

And accordingly, the tyres' profiles are automatically raised or widened accordingly, even when the car is in motion.

"That means your car is always equipped with the best possible tyre and noise and petrol consumption are automatically optimised, too," Riemer enthused.

"The driver no longer has to think about adapting their tyres. The tyre itself 'thinks' too."

The tyre is still a long way from a finished product and research is still ongoing, notably on the materials that can be used for the moveable parts of the tyre's profiles.

"But we've patented it already, just in case," Riemer said.

  • Masala Ramabulana - 2012-04-23 23:01

    Opening paragraph sound irrelevant for south African condition

  • Itumeleng - 2012-04-24 01:21

    Like this

  • Arthur - 2012-04-24 01:40

    I'll stick to traditional rubber thanks, it would be like slipping on a menthol rough rider expecting a good ride except I'll wake up in hospital because a nut exploded due to a technical fault. I rely on me, not some computer, certainly not some "intelligent wheel". Jeez, with this kind of dumb-tech I'll be a blob spoon fed by a robot. No thanks.

  • Ted - 2012-04-24 02:01

    TIA. What snow?

  • george.pito - 2012-04-24 05:52

    Hope it change from pothole to pothole speedhump to speedhump and then at least the engineers have jobs again changing tyres

  • Denise - 2012-04-24 07:00

    Snow? I mean, really, SNOW? Its a SAPA article. Surely someone could have edited this?

      ludlowdj - 2012-04-24 10:19

      Unfortunately most sharing agreements between media houses forbids the editing of articles.

  • Mark - 2012-04-24 07:13

    Yes SNOW. It does snow in South Africa, in certain mountainous areas, every winter.

  • shanleigh.sewsanker - 2012-04-24 07:58

    how about being happy about the fact that someone out there is trying to make a difference in driving in all types of weather and ultimately saving lives. Even though it may not snow in some parts of sa i does in others so try not to think off yourself when it comes to other peoples lives being improved to help them

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