Huge wheels are no stranger to German tyre manufacturer Continental. But now, Continental tyres are being used to help operate the world’s largest and tallest observation wheel – Ain Dubai, by Dubai Holding, located on Dubai’s must-visit island destination, Bluewaters.
Continental’s tyres have long been used in the operation of the London Eye – the UK capital’s own observation wheel, launched in 1999. So it was perhaps an obvious choice to seek out the brand’s products again for the record-breaking Dubai entertainment destination.
Absolutely essential for the smooth and consistent rotation of the wheel, with minimal downtime, Continental’s TerminalMaster tyres were chosen for their quality and reliability. Turning with the help of hydraulic motors, the 64 tyres serve as friction rollers in the drive systems at either end of the boarding platform to keep Ain Dubai turning on its slow and steady rotation, giving its guests unparalleled 360-degree views of the Emirate in premium comfort.
Designed and developed to withstand the extremely harsh conditions, huge payloads and a long service life required in its prime application of port container terminals the Continental 310/80R22.5 TerminalMaster tyre is also the perfect fit for this interesting niche application. Produced in Continental’s own production site in Otrokovice, Czech Republic this heavy-duty tubeless tyre features an extra-deep tread profile and industrial-strength casing, with a higher resistance to damage and punctures than standard tyres. The reinforced bead construction, special wear-resistant compound and excellent traction, interact seamlessly with the observation wheel’s drive system. These qualities all combine to produce an incredibly long-serving, high-performance product, perfect for the hours of service and high levels of safety required for the operation of Ain Dubai.
To further optimise the tyres’ performance, each tyre is digitally monitored by ContiConnect and ContiPressureCheck, which give continuous feedback on the tyre’s condition and advance notification if corrective actions related to the tyres are needed. These intelligent solutions are displayed on a web portal or app, which can deliver reports and analytics in addition to the constant monitoring. This intelligent technology means each tyre runs at optimum pressure and gives maximum uptime, which also equates to supreme safety, not to mention energy efficiency and the longest possible lifespan.
It’s easy to misjudge the scale of the tyres without some context: Each one measures 1,070 millimetres in diameter, and weighs in at 71.2 kilogrammes – huge in comparison to the 635-millimetre diameter and average eight-to-10-kilogramme weight of a typical 195/65/R15 sedan road tyre.
With its 11,200 tonnes of steel, 2,400 kilometres of cable, and capacity of up to 1,750 visitors across 48 spacious cabins, Ain Dubai is the definitive giant in its class and requires each of its components to be of the highest quality – this is where Continental’s tyres are best-in-class for the job.