The auto industry’s efforts to increase fuel economy and reduce emissions may pay off with the development of self-inflating tires.
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. said it was experimenting with what it calls Air Maintenance Technology, which will enable tires to remain inflated at the optimum pressure without the need for external pumps or electronics. All components of the AMT system, including a miniaturized pump, will be fully contained within the tire.
The company said Thursday that it had a $1.5 million grant to launch a demonstration of the system in commercial truck tires.
The government of Luxembourg is paying for the company to conduct similar research for consumer tires.
“While the technology is complex, the idea behind the AMT system is relatively simple and powered by the tire itself as it rolls down the road,” said Jean-Claude Kihn of Goodyear.