Continental introduced smart self-priming tiresSeptember 13, 2019
The problem of sudden pressure loss in a tire has not been so acute for a long time. Firstly, cars have learned to detect a decrease in pressure and warn the driver about it. Secondly, tires are installed on some models that are not afraid of complete depressurization (you can drive hundreds of kilometers to the nearest service). But Continental decided to go further: it introduced a prototype of a smart tire that not only knows how to pump itself, but also adapts the pressure to current conditions.
Concept Conti C.A.R.E. (Connected. Autonomous. Reliable. Electrified.) Was shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Such a tire is literally packed with sensors. They can find out the residual tread height, the technical condition of the tire, its temperature and, of course, the internal pressure. All this information is collected by the ContiSense system and transmitted via the built-in Bluetooth to the on-board computer of the car, then it can be sent to the owner’s smartphone.
The cornerstone of the new tire was the ability to independently adjust the pressure. For this, external pumping systems are not used (such were used on some trucks as far back as the middle of the last century), but an integrated centrifugal pump. When the car has gained speed, the pump may begin to pump air into the tire. Excess compressed air is stored in a small built-in tank, which can subsequently be used to quickly equalize the pressure in the wheel (this function is called PressureBoost).
The bottom line is Conti C.A.R.E. not only automatically maintains perfectly even pressure in the tires, but also can independently adapt it to environmental conditions: vehicle speed and load, ambient temperature and so on. Continental draws attention to the fact that this ultimately helps to reduce CO2 emissions, but there are actually more benefits: from improved controllability (if you increase pressure at high speeds) and throughput (if you reduce pressure on quick-moving surfaces) to less wear on the projector and less fuel consumption.
The ContiSense system is also presented as a convenient solution for fleet management: with its help, the owner will always know the status of all tires, and can also be sure that each of them is optimally pumped up.
While Continental does not talk about the possible timing of the appearance of a smart tire in the commercial market, as well as about the estimated price.
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