Goodyear un­veils Ea­gle 360 Ur­ban Tyre

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Goodyear has un­veiled its Ea­gle 360 Ur­ban con­cept tyre that is pow­ered by Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence (AI), at the Geneva In­ter­na­tional Mo­tor Show. The com­pany said this un­veil is in line with its long-term vi­sion for fu­ture smart, con­nected tyres, through which it aims to rev­o­lu­tionise the in­ter­ac­tion be­tween tyres, ve­hi­cles and their sur­round­ings. This 3-D printed sphere is the first con­cept tyre to be pow­ered by Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence and able to sense, de­cide, trans­form and in­ter­act, Goodyear noted.

Jean-Claude Kihn, Pres­i­dent, Goodyear Europe, Mid­dle East and Africa, said a rev­o­lu­tion will take place at the in­ter­sec­tion of au­ton­omy, mo­bil­ity and con­nec­tiv­ity. As this un­folds, tyre tech­nol­ogy will be even more im­por­tant than it is at present.”

The Goodyear Ea­gle 360 Ur­ban is made up of a 3D-printed bionic skin and mor­ph­ing tread, and will be­come part of the ve­hi­cle’s ‘ner­vous sys­tem’ and the con­nected world of the IoT. The highly-elas­tic bionic skin is equipped with a sen­sor net­work that al­lows it to check on its own sta­tus and gather in­for­ma­tion on its en­vi­ron­ment, in­clud­ing the road sur­face. Ad­di­tion­ally, the con­cept tyre also cap­tures in­for­ma­tion on its sur­round­ings in real-time via con­nec­tiv­ity with other ve­hi­cles, as well as in­fra­struc­ture, traf­fic and mo­bil­ity man­age­ment sys­tems. The smart tyre is said to com­bine th­ese sources of in­for­ma­tion and pro­cess­ing them in­stan­ta­neously us­ing neu­ral net­works trained with deep learn­ing al­go­rithms, and de­cide the most ap­pro­pri­ate course of ac­tion. The power of AI helps the Ea­gle 360 Ur­ban learn from pre­vi­ous ac­tions on how to op­ti­mise fu­ture re­sponses.

The Ea­gle 360 Ur­ban con­cept tyre’s bionic skin has flex­i­bil­ity sim­i­lar to that of hu­man skin, al­low­ing it to ex­pand and con­tract. This outer layer cov­ers a foam-like ma­te­rial that is strong enough to re­main flex­i­ble de­spite the weight of a ve­hi­cle, noted Goodyear. This flex­i­bil­ity al­lows ac­tu­a­tor el­e­ments be­neath the tyre’s sur­face to work­ing like hu­man mus­cles and re-shape the in­di­vid­ual sec­tions of the tyre’s tread de­sign. The com­pany said that dim­ples can be added for wet con­di­tions or smoothen­ing of the tread for dry con­di­tions are pos­si­ble with th­ese ac­tu­a­tors.

Goodyear also said that when the tyre’s bionic skin is dam­aged, the sen­sors in the tread can lo­cate the punc­ture, and the tyre can then ro­tate to cre­ate a dif­fer­ent con­tact patch. This re­duces pres­sure on the punc­ture and al­lows the self-heal­ing process to start, as a re­sult of ma­te­ri­als that are specif­i­cally de­signed to be able to flow to­wards the punc­ture, it ex­plained. They re­act phys­i­cally and chem­i­cally with each other to form new molec­u­lar bonds, clos­ing the punc­ture.

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