The majority of tires used in contemporary times are considered to be pneumatic tires. The use of rubber in tires enabled the creation of pneumatic tires which allowed for a much more comfortable ride. The contemporary transportation system of the world depends entirely on pneumatic tires.
A pneumatic tire is a tire made of toughened rubber and filled with compressed air. Motor vehicles such as motorcycles, airplanes, buses, cars and trucks all utilize pneumatic tires. Wheeled vehicles that are not motorized, such as bicycles, also use pneumatic tires.
The tire began after the creation or iron bands utilized 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 very first patent for a successful pneumatic tire was issued in 1888 to Irishman John Dunlop who invented an inner-tube for a bicycle tire. This was when the term "pneumatic" appeared to describe tires.
Seven years after, in 1895, Andre and Edouard Michelin produced pneumatic tires for an automobile in France. The Michelin brothers' company was destined to become a leading producer of car tires. The first company in the United States to produce tires was Goodyear Tire company established in 1898, followed by the Firestone Tire & Rubber company in 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 made of reinforced layers of cord or plies covered with rubber. The plies were laid on a bias or angle 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 constructed with plies that run across the body of the tire. Inner tube is not required since the tire forms an airtight seal with the wheel. This was the Michelin's brother's creation in 1948. The tires did not become widely utilized until the latter parts of the 1970s. Radial tires provide better fuel economy and last longer.