The majority of tires utilized in contemporary times are considered to be pneumatic tires. The utilization of rubber in tires allowed the invention of pneumatic tires which allowed for a more comfortable ride. The contemporary transportation system of the world depends completely on pneumatic tires.
A pneumatic tire is a tire made of toughened rubber and filled with compressed air. Motor vehicles like for example motorcycles, airplanes, trucks, buses and cars all use pneumatic tires. Non-motorized wheeled vehicles, like for instance bicycles, also utilize pneumatic tires.
The tire started after the creation or iron bands utilized around wooden wheels. It wasn't until the middle part of the 19th century that the use of solid rubber in the construction of tires. The first patent for a successful pneumatic tire was issued in 1888 to Irishman John Dunlop who invented an inner-tube for a bicycle tire. This was when the term "pneumatic" began to describe tires.
In the year 1895, Edouard and Andre Michelin made the very first pneumatic tires for automobiles in France. The company of the Michelin brothers was destined to become a top manufacturer of tires for cars. The very first U.S. company to produce tires was Goodyear Tire company founded in the year 1898, followed by the Firestone Tire & Rubber company in the year 1900, the second United States company to produce tires.
For the first half of the 20th century, pneumatic tires needed a rubber inner tube in order to hold the air pressure. Tires were constructed of reinforced layers of plies or cord covered with rubber. The plies were laid on an angle or bias to define the tire's shape and strengthen it. These "bias ply" tires had a tread pattern for traction.
The modern radial tire has been constructed with plies which run across the body of the tire. Inner tube is not required because the tire forms an airtight seal with the wheel. This was the Michelin's brother's creation in 1948. The tires did not become commonly used until the late 1970s. Radial tires provide better fuel economy and last longer.