Volcanic sand is used in the tire's Ice Zone, which has a high-tech rubber compound to create a rough surface on the treadface. As the tire is used, the volcanic sand "grit" presents microscopic cavities that work as tiny traction edges for better grip on slick surfaces.
"The volcanic sand is added to the tire as a ground pumice material," said Michael Crawford, a Goodyear engineer. "The pumice creates a constantly rough and textured surface that proves very effective in delivering the kind of grip that drivers demand."
The volcanic sand in the tire's "winter formulated compound" is complemented by the use of glass fibers. These tiny fibers are designed to create a pitted surface in the tread that "resembles a textured lunar surface," according to Crawford.
The unique rubber compounding of the Goodyear Assurance featuring TripleTred Technology™ is complemented by tread design in the three zones that also promotes superior traction.
The Water Zone, consisting of deeply carved Aquachutes, propels water away from the tire's tread on rain-drenched roads.
An interlocking tread pattern in the Ice Zone translates into more gripping power on icy or snow-covered roads.
The Dry Zone features reinforced tire shoulders for confident maneuvering around curves, potholes and unexpected road debris on dry pavement.
The tire comes in 16 sizes, ranging from 14- to 16-inch wheel diameters.
For more information, go to www.goodyearassurance.com.
Sometimes, it's good to have sand and glass in your tires, scientists have discovered.