CenTiRe was the lead recipient of a multi-I/UCRC NSF grant to investigate the integration of sensors into tires.  Researchers at three I/UCRC’s at Virginia Tech, one I/UCRC at Penn State University, and 12 industry partners are collaborating on the $1.2 million National Science Foundation-funded project. Dr. Saied Taheri, CenTiRe Director, is the lead investigator.

Piezoelectric sensors placed inside the tire will gather information about road conditions and the health of the tire, and transmit that information wirelessly to the car’s control systems. They can provide useful safety information like how fast the vehicle is traveling and whether the road is slippery. For example, adaptive cruise control, which adjusts the car’s speed to maintain a safe distance from other vehicles, could incorporate road-condition data into algorithms calculating how quickly or slowly it could safely modulate speed. Anti-lock brakes and active suspension systems use the data similarly.

The team will develop new manufacturing techniques for direct sensor integration into the tires. Because there are no methods currently available for integrating piezoelectric sensors into tires during the manufacturing and curing process, the team will use additive manufacturing — also known as 3-D printing — to print the electronic components onto finished tires.

The project was reviewed in a presentation at the recent CenTiRe IAB meeting in May, and the material has been made available to our members via the Members Area of the website. 

Article Link: HERE


Dr. Saied Taheri