WASHINGTON — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has determined that it is "technologically feasible" for tire makers to include electronic tire identification data in new tires, but it likely will require additional industry effort and possible regulatory action to ensure the use of a single type of technology and standard information format.
NHTSA's findings are included in a report to Congress, "Electronic Tire Identification Study," and are based on data gathered over the past three-plus years, since the passage of the Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act in December 2015.
The FAST Act included provisions that required the Secretary of Transportation to determine the feasibility of requiring all manufacturers of tires subject to U.S. laws governing the sale of tires to include electronic identification in every tire and ensure that the same type and format of electronic information technology is used on all tires.
Having such electronic ID methods available could aid the effectiveness of tire recalls, pundits have argued.
NHTSA's study identified two technologies in use for tire electronic identification — RFID tags and 2D barcodes — and found that either or both of these technologies could be used to implement electronic Tire Identification Number (TIN) information on all new tires.
While the technologies identified have the ability to accomplish electronic tire identification, NHTSA said, it was unable to determine the long-term durability of these technologies.
The study concluded that achieving a standard information content and format for the data would be possible and feasible, with including the TIN data locally within the ID tag considered the efficient method.
Since TINs follow a standard format, encoding the TIN directly in the identification tag would ensure a standard data format, NHTSA said.
The agency added it did not perform a full cost/benefit analysis of implementing this solution.