Airless bike wheels
The wheel spokes help keep the tyre’s shape rather than an inner tube CREDIT: BRIDGESTON.
Bicycle pumps and punctures could soon be a thing of the past after a company created a set of completely airless tyres.
Bridgestone has developed a bike tyre that is held in shape by plastic resin spokes instead of puncture-ridden inner tubes.
The wheels, which are already being used in some military vehicles and quad bikes, are expected to be available by 2019.
Airless bike tyre
The airless bike tyre could be ready available to cyclists by 2019 CREDIT: BRIDGESTONE
Rather than filling the tyre with air or rubber, as has traditionally been the case, Bridgestone has created rigid plastic spokes that keep it in shape as owners cycle.
They have been shaped to keep the cycle smooth and absorb bumps, according to Bridgestone, and are made out of recyclable materials.
The design could also be more fuel and energy efficient because of the shock absorption system.
Bridgestone airless car tyre
Bridgestone started designing an airless car tyre back in 2011 CREDIT: BRIDGESTONE
The company unveiled its first airless tyre back in 2013, which was designed for cars. Early criticism of the car version of the tyre, though, suggested they could wear out more quickly and might not have the same side forces. When it was first unveiled in 2011 the company said it had a maximum speed of 37mph.
The Tokyo-based Bridgestone is one of the largest tyre manufacturers in the world.