Most tires used in contemporary times are considered to be pneumatic tires. The utilization of rubber in tires allowed the invention of pneumatic tires which allowed for a much more comfortable ride. The contemporary transportation system of the world completely depends on pneumatic tires.
The pneumatic tire is a reinforced rubber tire and is then compressed with air. Motorized vehicles such as buses, cars, trucks, motorcycles and airplanes all use pneumatic tires. Non-motorized wheeled vehicles, such as bicycles, also utilize pneumatic tires.
The tire began after the creation or iron bands used around wooden wheels. It wasn't until the middle part of the 19th century that the use of solid rubber in the construction of tires. The first patent for a successful pneumatic tire was issued in 1888 to Irishman John Dunlop who invented an inner-tube for a bicycle tire in the year 1888. This was when the word "pneumatic" appeared to describe tires.
In 1895, Andre and Edouard Michelin made the very first pneumatic tires for automobiles in France. The company of the Michelin brothers was destined to become a leading manufacturer of car tires. The first company in the United States to produce tires was Goodyear Tire company founded in the year 1898, followed by the Firestone Tire & Rubber company in 1900, the second company in the US to produce tires.
For the first part of the 20th century, pneumatic tires required a rubber inner tube in order to hold the air pressure. Tires were constructed of toughened layers of cord or plies covered with rubber. The plies were laid on an angle or bias to strengthen it and to define the tire's shape. These "bias ply" tires had a tread pattern for traction.
The modern radial tire has been made with plies that run across the tire body. Inner tube is not necessary because the tire forms an airtight seal with the wheel. This was an invention of the Michelin company in 1948. The tires did not become commonly utilized until the latter parts of the 1970s. Radial tires offer better fuel economy and last longer.