While there are significant differences between the lunar surface and the earth's surface, there also is a lot of crossover in the expectations of both earth and lunar tires. After all, lunar vehicles are vehicles that will need to brake, accelerate and corner just like their terrestrial counterparts.
Optimizing vehicle dynamics is a space where Bridgestone believes it has the experience to tackle some of the biggest lunar tire challenges.
"A significant challenge to developing tires for the lunar surface, as identified by JAXA and Toyota during the joint review process, is being prepared for the rover's grounding on the moon," Bridgestone Japan said. "Bridgestone's elastic wheel will not only support the vehicle's weight, acceleration, braking, changing and maintaining of direction, but also will absorb shock from the landing."
Designing and developing tires that best manage a vehicle's capabilities is the heart and soul of Bridgestone. It's a concept the company calls Shinshu-Dokuso, or creative pioneering. And it's a spirit that is woven into the tire maker's entire portfolio.
Creative pioneering, Bridgestone Japan said, is what drives the tire maker to ensure that it not only puts forth the best possible products, but the kind of products that can have the greatest impact on society.
That concept is especially relevant today, not only through the development of earth tires for every application, but for nonpneumatic and lunar tires as well.
Bridgestone contends that by maintaining its focus on that creative pioneering spirit, it illuminates opportunities to perfect its products for an auto industry transitioning to new mobility.
"Bridgestone has an extensive portfolio of innovative products and solutions to meet any kind of condition and has the expertise and technology necessary to develop the contact patch for road surfaces all over the globe," Bridgestone Japan said. "With the expertise and technology Bridgestone continues to obtain from participation in the Space Exploration Mission, Bridgestone will be able to continue to support the realization of new mobility."