UROP Openings

Have a UROP opening you would like to submit?

Please fill out the form.

Submit your UROP opening

Tires and tire treads




2: Mechanical Engineering

Faculty Supervisor:

Brian Anthony

Faculty email:


Apply by:



Theresa Werth: theresaw@mit.edu

Project Description

Tire aging and wear is an inevitable part of current automotive transportation. As tires are moving toward higher mileage and longer durability it is very important to keep their performance within safe limits. Wet traction is one of the critical to safety performance parameters and is dependent on tire to road contact that is mitigated by a water layer. Removal of excess water is critical for improved wet traction. Current technology uses a variety of patterns that allow maintenance of a sufficient tire footprint for traction at safe vehicle speeds. As a tire wears, patterns degrade, and thus water evacuation is reduced. Investigating general design principles, constraints and limitations that would consider reduction of tread volume would be of general interest to tire industry, as well to other industries dealing with changing patterns and contact liquid distribution (lubrication, paint, etc.). In this project, a student will analyze (combining simple first order modelling with experimental data analysis) the water evacuation from tires as a function of the properties of tire tread pattern and tire wear to characterize the performance properties of different designs and constraints. Impact: This is of broad interest to the tire manufacturing industry. Of interest: https://www.bridgestonetire.com/tread-and-trend/tire-talk/tire-tread-patterns


Experience and/or interest in Fluid flow modelling and simulation, machine learning and data analytics techniques.