HILTON HEAD, S.C.—Technological innovations at major tire companies, especially those dealing with "big data" and tire-vehicle connectivity, are quickly making autonomous vehicles a reality, according to speakers at the 34th Clemson University Global Tire Industry Conference.
ContiSense and ContiAdapt are the technologies leading Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. into the future, said Mauricio Mendez Sotelo, Conti manager, technical product specialist, R&D, passenger and light truck tires, at the recent conference in Hilton Head.
"The tire needs to be able to sense the road," Mendez said. Conti's vision, he said, is an innovative tire concept with an intelligent tire and rim, sensing relevant tire data and using them to adapt to the surrounding driving conditions.
ContiSense monitors the tire's status based on the electrification of rubber, and ContiAdapt actively adapts the tire's footprint to the detected road condition or the driver's preference, he said.
"This concept tire enables the benefits of this advanced technology by offering an optimized pattern design," Mendez said.
Through ContiSense and ContiAdapt, the tire itself becomes a sensor, detecting punctures and tread depth, he said.
"By understanding the conductive characteristics of rubber, signals can be transported within the structure of the tire," he said. "Integrated sensors detect and transport data via Bluetooth to a back-end system for further processing and interpretation."