Most of the tires which have been used over the past 100 years have been pneumatic tires. They are made from rubber and allow for a far more comfy ride than other kinds of materials. 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. Motor vehicles including trucks, buses, cars, motorcycles and airplanes all utilize pneumatic tires. Non-motorized wheeled vehicles, like for example 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 the year 1888 to Irishman John Dunlop who created an inner-tube for a bicycle tire in 1888. This was when the term "pneumatic" appeared to describe tires.
In the year 1895, Edouard and Andre Michelin produced the very first pneumatic tires for automobiles in France. The company of the Michelin brothers was destined to become a top producer of automobile tires. The first U.S. company to produce tires was Goodyear Tire company founded in the year 1898, followed by the Firestone Tire & Rubber company in the year 1900, the second U.S. company to produce tires.
For the first half of the 20th century, pneumatic tires required a rubber inner tube in order to hold the air pressure. Tires were constructed of reinforced layers of plies or cord covered with rubber. The plies were laid on an angle or bias to strengthen it and to define the shape of the tire. These "bias ply" tires had a tread pattern for traction.
The modern radial tire has been constructed with plies which run across the tire body. They require no inner tube since the tire forms an airtight seal with the wheel. This was an invention of the Michelin company in the year 1948. The tires did not become widely utilized until the late 1970s. Radial tires offer better fuel economy and last longer.