Over the past year, researchers at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. have been working on a new Air Maintenance Technology (AMT) application that the tiremaker said can aid in fuel savings and CO2 reductions while potentially improving performance and eliminating the need for external inflation pressure intervention.
The commercial application of Goodyear's AMT made its debut at the 2012 IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Hanover, Germany.
Goodyear said its Air Maintenance Technology mechanism allows tires to maintain constant, optimum pressure without the use of external pumps, electronics and driver intervention. Proper tire inflation can result in improved fuel economy, prolonged tread life and optimized tire performance, the tiremaker added.
“Commercial trucks pose a different challenge for AMT than that of consumer vehicles as their tires are larger, have higher inflation pressures, drive longer distances and carry much heavier loads,” Goodyear stated. “Commercial tires operate at a higher air pressure, typically 105 psi for commercial tires vs. 32 psi for consumer tires. This is a much more challenging performance requirement for the pump system. The life of a commercial truck tire is often extended by retreading. The commercial truck AMT system is being designed to perform after the retreading process.”
“We believe the AMT application for commercial vehicle tires will not only enhance the performance of the tire, but will also provide cost savings to fleet owners and operators through the extension of tire tread life and increased fuel economy,” said Jean-Claude Kihn, Goodyear’s Chief Technical Officer. “The progress we continue to make with this technology is very encouraging. We look forward to further testing of this concept.”
AMT was developed at Goodyear’s Innovation Center in Akron, Ohio. Prototype tires have been produced at the tiremaker’s Topeka, Kan., plant. An extensive fleet trial is planned to gather real-world information from customers in 2013, Goodyear added.