Michelin Tweel becomes Lunar Wheel for NASA Lunar Rover gizmag

The Tweel is an non-pneumatic Tire/WhEEL combo which offers an idiot-proof, no-maintenance, easily-retreadable tire for consumers and the holy grail for the military – a tire that can’t be “shot out.” You won’t see the Tweel on your sandmobile any time soon because it has noise, vibration, heat and wear problems at highway speeds, but its unique construction enables it to be specifically engineered with ideal characteristics for highly specialized low speed applications. The ultimate badge of credibility was bestowed on the design when it rolled down Pennsylvania Avenue on NASA’s Small Pressurized Lunar Rover prototype during the Obama presidential inauguration.
Despite the fact that Michelin has been supplying space shuttle tires for more than two decades, years, NASA’s choice of Tweel-based technology in the development of new wheels for its lunar vehicles validates the claims Michelin has been making about the ability to engineer “designer properties” into its Tweel for specific applications.