Rubber may work great for tires here on earth, but not so much in other worlds. Even in our closest neighbor, the moon, temperature extremes and solar radiation wreak havoc on the bouncy material, degrading it faster than a run in a Nascar event ever could.
That's why NASA and Goodyear have teamed up to create a tire that can survive harsh environs such as the lunar moonscape. The result of their efforts is the Spring Tire, which is composed of 800 interwoven springs surrounded by mesh wire. This gives it rubber's familiar springiness, but without expected wear and tear.
An added benefit of this all-steel spring design is that the Spring Tire does not, according to NASA researcher Vivake Asnani, have "a single point failure mode." That means it can never get a flat tire. No wonder this innovation won both NASA and Goodyear a 2010 R&D 100 award.