Tyre with individual "balls"
The pneumatic tyre has a massive Achilles heel: lose the air and it stops the vehicle. The most-read story in the history of this fine publication is about Michelin's Tweel, the first viable alternative to the pneumatic tyre in more than a century with its greatest asset being that it doesn't go flat. Now there's another flat-proof inflation system based on individual balls or air cells that has evolved from motorcycle off-road racing, where to win, you need to be able to finish the race. Tyre Ball not only offers virtual flat-proof characteristics but simultaneously improves traction and improves suspension performance. In addition to racing, the Tyre Ball is also a natural for agricultural, commercial and military applications where a flat might cost you a whole lot more than time.It works like this - balls (air-cells) replace the vulnerable inner tube or tube-less inflation system. The system is designed to retrofit to conventional tyres and wheels and is lighter and more durable than foam inserts. Each individual Tyre Ball cell is made from materials that are claimed to be ten times more puncture resistant than conventional heavy-duty neoprene tubes. Punctures are still possible, but very rare. Instead of losing all the air in your tyre, only one cell goes flat, allowing you to finish the ride without needing to lose countless places in a race, or spend 20 minutes fixing a flat in the middle of the woods.
Source: tireballs.comAdded: 15 June 2006