The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company introduced its prototype tire with 2022% sustainable material content and an airless tire specially designed for Starship delivery robots, with industry-leading innovations at the 70 CES Fair (Consumer Electronics Fair).
The company has made significant progress towards its goal of producing tires from 2030% sustainable materials by 100.
Chris Helsel, Senior Vice President of Global Operations and Chief Technology Officer at Goodyear, said, “In 2020, we have set an ambitious goal of producing tires from 10% sustainable materials within 100 years. “This prototype is an exciting demonstration of our commitment to increase the amount of sustainable materials in our tires.”
Made from 70% sustainable materials, the tire contains 13 special materials made up of nine different tire components. Carbon black is used to strengthen the composition in tires and extend the life of the tire, and it is obtained by burning various petroleum products. Goodyear's new tire contains three different carbon blacks made from methane, carbon dioxide and plant-derived oil. Initial assessments reveal a reduction in carbon emissions compared to existing carbon black production methods, plant-based productions or the use of waste raw materials.
The use of soybean oil in tires is an important Goodyear innovation that helps the tire's rubber composition retain its elasticity in the face of changing temperatures. Soybean oil is a plant-based source that reduces Goodyear's use of petroleum-based products. While approximately 100% of soy protein is used in food/animal feed applications, a significant amount of waste oil is generated for use in industrial applications.
Another material frequently used in tires to increase handling and reduce fuel consumption is silicon. Goodyear's new tire contains a special type of silicon made from rice paddy ash, a byproduct of rice production that is often sent to landfills. High quality silicon is produced from this waste ash.
Polyester recycling is carried out by recycling polyester from plastic bottles and other plastic wastes into base chemicals and turning it into industrial polyester suitable for tire production.
Airless tire specially designed for Starship delivery robots at CES Fair
Starship Technologies, one of the companies in the Goodyear Ventures portfolio, develops and operates more than 1.000 autonomous delivery robots that deliver packages, grocery items and food directly to customers.
In response to Starship's demands for tire health and maintenance, Goodyear has developed a specially designed airless tire for its delivery fleet to extend tire life and reduce maintenance periods.
Goodyear and Starship conducted field tests with Bowling Green State University to evaluate vehicle and tire compatibility. The first data after these tests showed positive results in terms of tread wear, braking and vibration reduction.
Goodyear Airless Tire Program Senior Manager Michael Rachita said: “We are excited to make our custom airless tire infrastructure part of new forms of 'mobility'. The micro-delivery area presents diverse tire needs, and our airless tire technology is ideal for meeting these needs to provide a maintenance-free and durable tire experience.”
Starship Technologies Mechanical Engineering Manager Siim Viilup said: “Our delivery robots make thousands of deliveries per day in all weather and ground conditions. To keep up with the growing demand for our services, we need reliable tires that can keep our robots running around the world. As we grow our business, we are pleased to see these new tires deliver reliability and cost savings.”