Gallery: BriTek’s Brilliant Airless Bicycle Tire Reinvents the Wheel

 

Flat bicycle tires could be a thing of the past thanks to BriTek‘s amazing new Energy Return Wheel. Whereas most bike tires regulate tire firmness with air pressure, with the Energy Return Wheel one simply adjusts the tension of the rubber that is stretched around a 29-inch carbon fiber wheel.

Initially tested on cars, the airless tire is comprised of two layers of rubber – one at the center, stretched and held by adjustable rods, and the other on the outside. The space between, usually filled with air, holds a series of elastic cushions. The internal scaffolding of rods and cushions allow the tire go give and, according to Britek, react better to compression. As the internal rubber layer gets compressed by bumps from the road, the elastic potential energy stored within the wheel is returned and converted into forward momentum.

The Energy Return Wheel is still being tested (the company is considering adding thin sidewalls to the fiber rims, to keep mud and trail debris from piling up within them). Whether or not the new bike tire represents the future of everyday cycling remains to be seen.

+ Energy Return Wheel

Via NBC News

LEAVE A COMMENT

or your inhabitat account below

Let's make sure you're a real person:


6 Comments

  1. Francisco Jimenez April 2, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    And here is a promotional video for them that I found on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TYW5EcxCPzc

  2. Francisco Jimenez April 2, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    Yes, these wheels are for sale, but they are not cheap at this point ($625)- plus maybe they can shipped to India and other countries for more. Here is the company webpage for this wheel: http://www.energyreturnwheel.com/

  3. royishan April 2, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Is this still at prototype stage or can it be bought for a 26″ 2×2 mtb?
    Is there a store somewhere that can be contacted for the ERW’s.. can it be bought online!!?? please give selling details!

  4. magsb November 28, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    BTW, I really LOVE the technology!!!!
    Question: what if the trail was muddy? wouldn’t all the mud get into the tire?

  5. Michael Barber August 23, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    I want

  6. amritananda sandy May 18, 2013 at 12:51 am

    Request – Details of the Seller of – Bicycle\’s – Energy Return Wheel – in India.

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
What are you looking for? (Solar, HVAC, etc.)
Where are you located?