Rubber researchers may have finally fixed the flat tire - forever.

Scientists at Germany's Leibniz Institute for Polymer Research have developed rubber that heals itself.

The tire revolution involves moving away from vulcanization, a method of heating rubber with sulphur to make it durable enough for the road.

Adding carbon and nitrogen allows rubber strands to meld back together after a puncture: just leave your tired tire to recuperate at room temperature for a week or so, and it's ready to re-inflate. So, you may still need to keep a spare on hand.

For more information, check out the study published in September's Applied Materials and Interfaces - or this video:


Right now, the new rubber is still a work-in-progress, so you can't put flats in your rearview mirror just yet.

h/t The Globe and Mail