NASA To Employ Chainmail Tyres With Shape Shifting Feature
While there are many innovations in the tyre industry with the introduction of cheap tyres on the Gold Coast, NASA is breaking grounds with their newly developed tyre. Exploring a foreign planet means a flat tyre is not a welcome situation thus NASA decided to develop tyres made chainmail.
The tyres will be composed titanium nickel formed into a weave. This alloy is known for its ability to go back to its previous shape which is ideal to make sure that the tyre will not suffer dents.
The developers of the tyres are experts based in Glenn Research Centre under NASA located in Cleveland, Ohio. The idea was first discussed in the middle of 2000s. It was a concept by VivakeAsnani who is an engineer working for NASA. She collaborated with Goodyear in order to create the Spring Tyre which is an airless type composed of steel wires formed into coils and turned into flexible mesh.
The Spring Tyre turned out to have excellent traction and it is durable even when used over rocks and sand. The design was utilized by the Mars Curiosity Rover and the vehicle is currently on an exploration in Mars.
The rover landed on 2012 and a year later, engineers saw that the wheels are suffering great damage because of the harsh terrain on the planet which they did not expect. This made them doubt if the rover will be able to drive far away in order to finish its mission.
To solve the issue, NASA engineers Santo Padula together with Colin Creager found a solution by using a new material which is an alloy with titanium as the base. Mr. Padula said that the material does not suffer deformation which is common in other materials.
The material is unique because its atom can rearrange in order to compensate for the deformation. They are able to deform the material as much as 30 times before any permanent dent could occur.
While this may not be a feasible option in consumer vehicles, there are cheap tyres on the Gold Coast with a wide variety of options.