BriTek’s airless tire will never leave you flat

BriTek’s airless tire will never leave you flat

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A flat tire can be a nightmare at the best of times. Nobody wants to be left stranded away from their destination with no other option than to carry the bike and revert to two legs rather than two wheels. There are puncture-proof tires out there but BriTek have taken a completely different approach and created a tire that doesn’t need any air at all.

[Image Source: BriTek]

The Energy Return Wheel is a tire that has rubber treads stretched around 29 inch carbon fiber rims. Tire pressure is normally regulated by putting in or letting out air but BriTek’s offering allows you to adjust tensioning rods to make the ride harder or softer.

Initially tested on cars, the airless tire is comprised of two layers of rubber – one at the center, stretched and held by the tensioning rods, and the other on the outside. Between them is a structure of supporting rods that are elastic which compress to provide suspension over bumpy ground.

You may be wondering why it’s called the Energy Return Wheel. Well, according to Britek founder Brian Russell, the stretching of the internal rubber layer allows elastic potential energy to be stored within the wheel. As that layer is compressed by bumps transmitted from the road, the stored energy is supposedly returned (hence the name) and converted into forward momentum.

[Image Source: BriTek]

The sides of the wheel are open so we imagine you’d need a good pressure cleaner to get all the dirt out of the nooks and crannies, but we imagine it contributes to keeping the weight down significantly.

They’re available to order on the company’s website but they don’t come cheap, starting at $2,499 for a set (front and back tires). They also come in a 26 inch rim offering.