Goodyear wants to get some of that energy back - energy inadvertantly expended through the friction of contact with the road - by turning the resulting heat from your tyre's rotation into electricity. The company showed off their BH03 concept tyres at the Geneva Motor Show that they have specifically designed to generate electricity “during normal driving conditions”. This, through a tight integration with in-car electronics, can charge the onboard batteries of EVs and Hybrids while on the move with a small but constant supply of power that can yield extra range over the longer term, making a significant stride in the efficiency equation.
The BH03 uses a thermo/piezoelectric material that converts the mechanical stress into an electrical charge that works together with an “ultra black texture” to absorb as much heat and light as possible.
Goodyear also announced their Triple Tube concept (pictured above) alongside the BH03, which uses three separate tubes under the thread to dynamically alter its grip characteristics depending on the surface conditions and driver preference. Through an internal pump, air pressure would either maximize or minimize inflation at certain points in the cross section to reach one of three settings: ‘Eco/Safety’ maximizes air pressure to decrease rolling resistance, ‘Sport’ would improve grip by adding air to the inboard tube to increase the contact patch, lastly “Wet Traction” will only increase air to the center tube to improve the odds against aquaplaning.
Although these are just concepts for the moment, they aren’t so far-fetched as to seem unfeasible. There’s a good chance that we will see tires with technology along these lines fitted to cars in the near future, and Goodyear clearly wants to be its pioneer.
Video courtesy of Motor+