Video: NASA develops rims inspired by the mail of the medieval chain


NASA has followed the example of the Middle Ages when it designed a new tire built to be truly out of this world. This state-of-the-art innovation The NASA Glenn Research Center developed the "Superelastic" tire, a technology inspired by the mesh armor of medieval knights.

Able to withstand more deformation than any other non-pneumatic tire, NASA intends to replace it with aluminum wheels found in vehicles such as Curiosity, which is currently exploring the dunes of Mars. With the Red Planet and our Moon covered by rugged terrain with sharp rocks and jagged edges, NASA's Superelastic tire could be very beneficial for Curiosity, which has suffered a severe beating in the five years it has been active.

The flexible chain type tire is made with alloys such as nickel titanium that make it capable of withstanding up to 10% deformity.

  NASA has developed superelastic tires that could be used for future space exploration, as well as here on Earth.

NASA has developed superelastic tires that could be used for future space exploration, as well as here on Earth.

"The use of a NiTi shape memory alloy produces a superelastic tire that is virtually impervious to plastic deformation." according to a press release from NASA. "In addition, the use of shape memory alloys provides improved control over effective stiffness as a function of deformation, providing greater design versatility."

Although we probably will not see these rims in rovers in the short term, NASA intends for its impressive development to contribute to future space exploration missions. The agency is also aware that the Superelastic tire could have an even more immediate role here on Earth. Difficult to penetrate and capable of suffering great tension, NASA believes that tires could be very useful to improve the safety of the car, as well as the technology applied to all-terrain vehicles, military vehicles and even airplanes.

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