This kind of concept was seen on many conceptcars developed to imagine a world without tires…
That’s the key point of the work of ERW… I mean to work on intelligent products that requires less petroleum impacts (because of more durability) without loosing dynamic qualities.
ERW (http://www.energyreturnwheel.com/) develops now an application for bikes… just imagine 2 seconds your mtb without tires ?
For this mtb wheel application, you can watch the video here. It’s difficult to say if this concept is well performing or not… but it seems to work.
Nevertheless, what happens when you’re riding in the mud … it could easily enter into the wheel… a lot of non-desired weight.
And this system make me think that some guys invented a solution to ride their bike during the WW2… at this time, it was impossible to find tires. So they created this system, made of springs compressed between the rim and a plate of metal. Very ingenious isn’t it ?