For years, the US government has mandated that tire pressure monitoring systems be installed in cars. These give you a light on the dash to tell you when a tire is low and leave it to you to go and inflate the tire at the gas station. Goodyear is testing a new tire that will be able to inflate itself, meaning one day you will never need to go to the station for air again.
Goodyear is testing what it calls Air Maintenance Technology with multiple US and Canadian trucking fleets over the next 18 months. The tech continuously monitors pressures to keep tires at the ideal level. Goodyear receives a grant from the DOW Office of Vehicle Technology for $1.5 million to assist in research and development of the AMT system.
The tire technology will be for commercial fleets once it is available commercially. If it works well it could come to standard vehicle tires in the future. I like the idea of having a system that simply keeps the tires correctly inflated rather than a dummy light on the dash of the car. Commercial fleets are a good place to start since tires are one of the biggest costs for these fleets.