Whether you’re aware of it or not, we are surrounded by an exceptional amount of energy sources. And while they’re mostly NOT unlimited–as we’ve learned the hard way–the consumption of such ‘resources’ can be maximised if we harness them using the right technology in the most efficient manner. Now, I can go on and explain how that process is not that complicated, even if it is, in all levels that complicated, or I can just conveniently introduce you all to this state-of-the-art, electricity-generating, concept tyre by Goodyear: the BH-03.
While the current product code BH-03 is anything but flashy, everything else about it seems like a step above the ordinary. The idea behind the concept tyre is to capture energy in two ways. First, Goodyear is trying to take advantage of piezoelectricity, which by definition is the electric charge that usually builds up in certain materials as they’re squeezed or pressed. The concept makes a whole lot of sense since tyres are constantly under pressure anyway. So putting it to good use sounds just about right. And honestly, it’s about time someone does it, right? Well, Goodyear is making that happen, folks.
The second idea is centred on creating electricity through thermoelectricity, converting variations in temperature into electric voltage. After all, whether they’re sitting in the sun or spinning on the road, tires generate heat. So with that, Goodyear is looking to use thermoelectric materials (like bismuth telluride and tin selenide), to generate electricity from the difference between the hottest and coolest parts of the rubber. Again, the challenge will be in incorporating those materials without sacrificing elasticity and durability.
Goodyear also unveiled a second concept called ‘Triple Tube’. This tyre features three internal tubes located beneath the tread near the inboard and outboard shoulders of the tyre, as well as the centre. It relies on an internal pump that moves air from the main air chamber to the three individual air chambers, or tubes.
There are no immediate plans to release these concepts, though the tyre maker was optimistic that could be done eventually.