Goodyear is showcasing its latest tyre concept at this year’s Geneva International Motor Show- a futuristic tyre that has the capacity to produce its own electricity.
Conceived by Goodyear’s Innovation Centre engineers and simply called by its development code “BH03”, the tyre can transform generated deformation and vibrations into electrical energy. As interest for electric cars grows in the global marketplace, this type of innovation is expected to play a role in ongoing discussions on the future of mobility. The tyre is a purely conceptual development and is designed to be part of the company’s innovation thought process. There is no plan to release this tyre to the market.
“Concerns about energy and the environment drove us to develop this energy producing concept tyre. Every futuristic idea starts with a societal challenge that we aim to address as we work to build a better future. We are highly convinced that this tyre provides inspiration and that its insights will have a place in future development,” said Jean-Pierre Jeusette, General Director at the Goodyear Innovation Center in Luxembourg, which developed the concept.
The concept tyre creates electrical energy that supplies the batteries of the car’s hybrid powertrain, as well as other on-board technologies. The tyre generates electricity via the action of two types of material:
- Thermoelectric material transforms the heat (generated inside the tyre by the ultra-black texture in static condition by light/heat absorption or by its rolling when dynamic) into electric energy;
- Piezoelectric material transforms the pressure due to structure deformation and vibrations into electric energy
These new materials form a 3D network which constitute the inner structure of the tyre. This structure could potentially support the load of a car if the tyre gets punctured, an alternative approach to delivering RunonFlat technology. Additionally, it features a large circumferential channel to improve aquaplaning resistance and a unique tread to absorb noise.
“This electricity generating concept tyre is further proof of the impressive innovation developed by our designers and scientists from the Goodyear Innovation Centre in Luxembourg, and we are thrilled to showcase it at Geneva,” said Jeusette. “What is especially impressive about the tyre is that its remarkable technology has been created in a way that furthers Goodyear’s constant quest for sustainability, quality and safety.”
The tyre is a pure concept development and will not be produced by Goodyear. Concept tyres are designed as part of the company’s innovation process and are developed to stir debate, discuss possible solutions and enable engineers to think out of the box to deliver smart solutions for a smart future.
* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA
VR becomes business tool
By Darren Cohen, associate partner and portfolio lead for reality science at Business Science Corporation
A significant challenge facing mining and other industries is skills development and the question of how to move the needle when it comes to ensuring memory retention in safety training. Virtual Reality (VR) technology offers a solution that is both more efficient and more effective at skills transfer, which can sometimes be a matter of life and death.
VR is an established and proven technology. However, historically, VR has largely existed in the realm of the gaming industry, where the technology has been developed and refined. Beyond its impressive “wow factor”, VR is no longer just a fad. Recent technological advancements have opened VR to applications as a mainstream business tool that can save organisations time and money and assist in skills transfer.
This is of special importance in the mining industry, which has taken great strides to improve its safety record, but still faces safe-production challenges, as evidenced by the recent spate of incidents and fatalities at several South African mines during this year.
VR technology provides a fully immersive 3D experience, giving participants a sense of really being in the environment they are viewing. Sensors in the Head Mounted Display (HMD) track motion as the participant’s head moves and alter vision accordingly. Participants gain hands-on experience in a safe, controlled virtual environment that closely replicates the real world in which they will be working, in ways that have never been possible with traditional 2D training media. This allows participants to become completely familiar with even the most dangerous working environments, in complete safety.
Click here to read about how VR
Nine years later, Nintendo set to lead again
Nintendo is set to regain its leadership position in video game consoles for the first time since 2009, according to the latest projections from Strategy Analytics’ Connected Home Devices service.
The report, Global Game Console Market Forecast, predicts that Nintendo will sell 17.3 million Switch consoles worldwide in 2019, while Sony will sell 17.1 million PS4 and PS4 Pro consoles. Microsoft will remain in third place, selling 10.0 million Xbox One and Xbox One X devices. The overall console market has performed well in 2018, with total global sales reaching 46.1 million devices, the highest level since 2010.
Other key findings from the report include:
- Sony is still the market leader in terms of consoles in use; it accounts for nearly half of all video games consoles in use, and 84% of these are now PS4 or PS4 Pro devices
- Video game console ownership has been rising again in recent years; 45% of North American homes and 20% of Western European homes now own at least one console
- The global retail value of the games console business is predicted to reach $15.4bn in 2018, an increase of 7.6%
- 2019 revenues are expected to decline by 10% as shipment volumes and prices fall
- By 2023 revenues will return to 2018 levels, driven by the launch of next generation systems such as the PS5 and Xbox and Switch updates
David Watkins, Director at Strategy Analytics, commented, “Contrary to some expectations, the global TV games console market remains healthy. Many pundits have written it off over the years, for reasons ranging from the emergence of cloud gaming to the dominance of mobile devices and the arrival of VR, but it refuses to die. In fact, there is an argument that the enduring appeal of the TV games console, now in its sixth decade, continues to demonstrate the weaknesses and limitations of alternative games platforms.”
Chirag Upadhyay, Senior Analyst at Strategy Analytics, added, “Console upgrade cycles continue, and the three-way battle between Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo, which has been raging now for the best part of two decades, shows no sign of abating as each platform owner discusses its plans for updates and new generations. In partnership with developers and driven by the ever-rising expectations of consumers we fully expect these platform owners to continue to push the boundaries of the large screen gaming experience for many more years to come.”