Goodyear Unveils Moss-Covered Concept Tire That Helps Improve Air Quality
Goodyear has introduced its latest concept tire at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show.
The tire has a unique structure that features living moss growing within its sidewall. This open structure and the tire's tread design are planned to absorb and circulate moisture and water from the road surface.
The concept, named Oxygene aims to provide a solution for cleaner, more convenient, safer and sustainable urban mobility. It also brings the future of mobility to life.
As the tire absorbs and circulates moisture and water from the road surface, photosynthesis occurs, and therefore, releases oxygen into the air.
WHO says air quality levels low
More than 80 percent of people living in air pollution-measured urban areas are exposed to air quality levels exceeding WHO limits, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
"With more than two-thirds of the world population expected to live in cities by 2050, the demands on transport networks in urban environments will increase substantially," Chris Delaney, President of Goodyear Europe, Middle East and Africa, said.
"Smarter, greener infrastructure and transport will be crucial in addressing the most pressing challenges of urban mobility and development."
In harmony with future urban settings
Goodyear's Oxygene concept is inspired by the principles of the circular economy and puts emphasis on reducing material waste, emissions, and energy loss. The concept is designed to integrate into future urban settings. It also features several performance solutions.
The concept tire aims to clean the air we breathe. It absorbs moisture from the road through its tread and inhales carbon dioxide from the air. It thus feeds the moss in its sidewall and releases oxygen via photosynthesis.
This would mean generating nearly 3,000 tons of oxygen and absorbing more than 4,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year in a city similar in size to greater Paris which has about 2.5 million vehicles.
Oxygene also works to recycle worn tires. It features a non-pneumatic construction which is 3D-printed with rubber powder from recycled tires. This structure is light and shock-absorbing. It also provides a long-lasting, puncture-free solution that can extend the life of the tire and minimize service issues. The tire's open structure ensures additional safety as it improves wet grip by helping absorb water from the tread.
The tire generates its own electricity
Oxygene uses the energy generated during photosynthesis to power its electronics which are embedded. This includes onboard sensors, an artificial intelligence processing unit, and light strip which is customizable in the tire's sidewall.
This strip switches colors, warning both road users and pedestrians of upcoming maneuvers, such as lane changes or braking.
Oxygene can communicate at the speed of light. It uses a visible light communications system to achieve high-capacity mobile connectivity at the speed of light. This system enables the tire to connect to the Internet of Things, allowing vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) data Exchange.
"Like the concept designs Goodyear has presented at Geneva in the past, Oxygene is meant to challenge our thinking and help drive the debate around smart, safe and sustainable future mobility," Delaney said. "By contributing in this way to cleaner air generation, the tire could help enhance quality of life and health for city-dwellers."
Researchers have developed a breakthrough technology that restored vision to 20 people affected with low vision/blindness.