Goodyear has forged another agreement aimed at fully developing a tire pressure monitoring system to help motorists maintain recommended tire inflation.

The latest pact is with Phase IV Engineering, Inc. of Boulder, Colo., a developer of custom radio frequency identification (RFID) and radio telemetry systems. Under this agreement, Goodyear has acquired a 20 percent equity interest in Phase IV and the two companies will continue to develop tire pressure monitoring technology.

Similar technology was unveiled last week when Goodyear announced an "intelligent" tire system that monitors and reports tire pressure and temperature for tires on large haul trucks used in mining and other off-highway, heavy-duty applications. The product, developed with Phase IV and unveiled at MINExpo 2000 in Las Vegas, is the only commercially available system.

"Our agreement with Phase IV is yet another sign of Goodyear's commitment to tire safety, durability and performance," said Joe Gingo, Goodyear senior vice president for technology and global products planning. This is the third such agreement over the past few months that involves runflat tire and wheel technology and air pressure monitoring and maintenance systems.

Last month, Goodyear announced a technology agreement with Cycloid Systems of Cranberry, Pa., a developer of continuous air pressure monitoring and maintenance systems.

"Taking minority positions with technology companies is also part of our "corner" strategy to be more than a tire supplier to automotive manufacturers," Gingo said. "This strategy is to provide the best wheel-end solution for run-flats and conventional tires and develop integrated components and technology for vehicle suspension systems. We are committed to run-flat tire technology and developing vehicle systems for the automotive market."

In June, Goodyear signed an agreement with Michelin to combine its EMT and Michelin's PAX technologies to set an industry tire and wheel standard and broaden run-flat tire appeal and availability.

Goodyear's ultimate goals are tire safety and providing systems that will enable consumers to safely, conveniently and regularly maintain proper tire pressure, which can lead to longer and more-even tire wear and increased fuel economy, Gingo said.

Based in Boulder, Colorado, Phase IV develops and supplies custom radio frequency identification (RFID) and radio telemetry systems to the OEM and other markets. Phase IV specializes in passive sensing transponders based on their custom chip and low cost, battery powered temperature and sensing telemetry systems.

"We're very pleased to be associated with Goodyear, a company with a long-standing commitment to technical innovation," said Rich Pollack, president of Phase IV. "We look forward to continuing to create the synergies that result from the combination of our two companies' tire, vehicle systems and electronics experience and technologies." Under the agreement, Phase IV is licensed to use passive sensing transponder chips and related technologies developed for Goodyear in non-tire fields.

Goodyear has been working with Phase IV since 1992 to develop a system
that could be embedded in a tire for identification purposes and monitoring air pressure and tire temperature. The results can be displayed through an external device or a display on the vehicle's dashboard.

Goodyear, the world's largest tire company, has long been a leader in
run-flat tire technology. It has been an original equipment supplier of its EMT run-flat tires for several years.

For more information about Goodyear and Phase IV, visit the companies'
websites at www.goodyear.com and www.phaseivengr.com