Our military researchers are now working on adaptive bulletproof vests, which will morph as the bullet hits them, displacing the energy across the vast rather than towards the soldier wearing the vest. Such technology is nearly upon us, and we should be able to see this within the next five years. Such incredible technology is a marvel of military scientific ingenuity, but it also has many advantages in other industries, and therefore makes a perfect transfer technology in materials.
Consider if you will that the automobile industry is relying on aerospace, military, and NASA space-age materials to make the cars lighter, and therefore more fuel efficient and easily able to attain the new CAFE standards set by Congress. One of the biggest problems that we have with used tires in the automotive industry – is where to put them or how to recycle them once they are used up. Currently, the tires are often recapped, or cut apart and recycled. There is one company that cuts them apart and uses them for shingles on roofs as building materials.
However, in the future tires may not get blowouts, or become flat. This is because the materials will self heal and when they hit something in the road, the materials and the tire will swarm towards the object which is attacking the material as it will a bullet on a bullet proof vest. Currently, we have run-flat-tires, and other strategies to protect blowouts from causing accidents. In the future I imagine we can go one step further, and even build the tires with various materials in a composite fashion, which will be much stronger than today’s steel belted radials.
And, once we take out the steel it will be much easier to recycle these tires. Perhaps there will be a rubber composite coating on the exterior of tires made of carbon nano composite, or Graphene coatings. The tires will be stronger, long-lasting, and extremely light. In fact they could easily take off 150 pounds off the weight of the car, and we will be taking the weight off where it matters most – this is because it takes energy to move those tires around in a circle. Please consider all this.