Issues faced by the tire industry, particularly in the U.K., are addressed: energy consumption, noise pollution, safety, and product liability. An overview is given of the diminishing world supply of fossil fuels, and energy consumption by tires. One estimate is that tires account for 38% of the energy expended in vehicle propulsion. A 10% reduction in tire energy absorption would annually save 2.86 million tons of fuel in Europe alone. Tire parameters related to energy consumption are examined: deflection, tread mix, tread width, and weight and size. The relationship of tire width to noise levels, as well as to handling characteristics, is considered. The present trend is toward greater tire width which improves handling but increases noise levels. Tire safety is discussed in terms of primary safety (i.e. inflated performance), secondary safety (i.e. deflated performance), run flat, and tire pressure. Growing demand is noted in the U. K. for product liability laws such as those in the U.S. It is concluded that every effort must be made to reduce tire energy consumption. A 10% reduction in tire hysteresis losses may be achieved by attention to tread compound at comparatively low cost. Such a reduction would improve the fuel economy by 3.8% (compared to a 3.7% saving via a 10% reduction in vehicle weight). The trend toward low profile tires tends to be unproductive. A major short-term improvement in safety would result from adoption of low pressure warning devices rather than from any major tire development. There is an urgent need to develop a method of bead retention which is acceptable across the tire industry.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Presented at Plastics and Rubber Institute 5th Annual Conference on Tyres, Stratford-upon-Avon, England, 14-16 November 1979.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Communication Channels, Incorporated

    6151 Powers Ferry Road, N.W.
    Atlanta, GA  United States  30339-2941
  • Authors:
    • Randles, J N
  • Publication Date: 1980-3

Media Info

  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: p. 29-33
  • Serial:
    • Elastomerics
    • Volume: 112
    • Issue Number: 3
    • Publisher: Communication Channels, Incorporated

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00391460
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-028 706
  • Files: HSL, USDOT
  • Created Date: Dec 30 1984 12:00AM