Solvay has appointed Jean-Francis Spindler to the role of research and innovation director within its Silica business unit. Spindler graduated with a Ph.D. in Organic Catalysis in 1990 from Claude Bernard University in Lyon, France and joined Rhône Poulenc as a project manager. He progressed through various scientific and management roles; his most recent positions were R&D director for Rhodia Organics and R&I European Zone director for Rhodia and then Solvay upon the former company’s acquisition.
On 27 January, Point S Development, the Lyon, France-based international headquarters of the Point S network, launched a new version of its “eios” European online ordering system. The new version was developed after analysing member purchasing behaviour over a period of several months; Point S Development says the latest eios website is more intuitive than the previous version.
Truck tyre retreading is an important means by which transport companies can reduce costs per mile. Goodyear Dunlop operates three mould cure retreading facilities in Europe – in Lyon, France, Wolverhampton, UK and the 2011-opened Wittlich plant in Germany – and has built up its mould cure retread portfolio. The company has now extended its range of services; in addition to acquiring and exchanging casings, as of September 2013 it will mould cure retread customer own casings.
Infinity Tyres has confirmed its participation at this year’s Autopromotec in Bologna, where it plans to stage the official launch of its Ecopioneer, Enviro, and Ecovantage tyres. All three tyres, which have fitments for small city cars, SUVs and light commercial vehicles respectively were previewed previously at Pneu Expo in Lyon and Madrid’s Motortec Automechanika Ibérica. They will come to market in summer 2013.
Infinity Tyres has exhibited the three latest additions to its range at events in France and Spain. Joining the recent performance geared passenger car tyre lines, the Ecomax and the Ecosis, the Ecopioneer, Enviro and Ecovantage patterns were displayed at Pneu Expo in Lyon and at Madrid’s Motortec Automechanika Ibérica. The two performance PCR products have begun shipping to Europe from China’s Shandong Linglong plant, which manufactures the brand, while the other new models will arrive later in the year to complete a full 13-19 inch line-up in 2013.
The use of recycled tyre rubber in the production of new tyres hasn’t really taken off yet, and a main reason for this is because the rubber powder produced by traditional recycling methods doesn’t always reach the level of purity required by new tyre makers – indeed, the European Tyre & Rubber Manufacturers’ Association opines that “while in the EU around 39 per cent of material from end of life tyres is recovered [this includes rubber, but also steel and fabric], recycled materials cannot be used as a substitute for natural rubber in new tyres because of technical limitations.” But now a firm in Hungary claims to have perfected a process that removes every last trace of steel from the rubber powder, thereby overcoming this limitation. Speaking with Tyres & Accessories during February’s Tire Technology Expo in Germany, Gábor Kostyál, CEO of HungaroJet Ltd., described the technology involved and how it can benefit the tyre and rubber industry.
France has long been associated with fashion, and the organiser of the upcoming Pneu Expo 2013, which takes place next March in Lyon, has ensured visitors to the tyre industry show don’t miss out on this French tradition. Organiser Editions VB says that on the exhibition’s opening night visitors will be able to attend a fashion show, in which “graceful models will parade in sexy outfits composed of…recycled inner tube.”
No need for undue excitement. An agreement has been ratified between Cooper Tire & Rubber and workers based in Findlay, Ohio – but they aren’t the locked-out workers embroiled in the fracas oft reported by Tyrepress.com over the past couple of months. The three-year contract with the US tyre maker involves truck drivers represented by the Teamsters union. Final approval of the new contract was given on 18 February.
German-based tyre website Tyre24 recently launched Tyre24.fr SARL at the Pneu Expo 2012 Lyon (France) between 7 and 9 February 2012. Exhibiting from a 40 square metre stand, the French branch of the B2BPlattform which has been online since 2010, launched the latest offering into what is new territory for the company.
Discussions are currently underway over plans to extend the French rail network with a new, second high speed line between Paris and Lyon. The project is known as the LGV POCL (short for Paris, Orléans, Clermont-Ferrand and Lyon), and at present four potential routes are being evaluated. The decision ultimately arrived at is, French media sources indicate, of high interest to Michelin, whose headquarters are situated in Clermont-Ferrand. Michelin managing partner Michel Rollier is reported to have described the POCL line as key to Clermont-Ferrand’s continued attractiveness to the tyre maker.
Bosch Automotive Aftermarket has appointed Alex Gibson and Paul Rendell as technical service advisors in the UK. The appointments were made following the transfer of existing advisors, Steve Meloy and Kevin Lyon, to the Data Engineering team and Original Equipment division, respectively. Gibson and Rendell join the hotline team responsible for providing technical assistance to Bosch customers to support servicing, diagnostic trouble-shooting, and replacement and repair of automotive products.
Hankook has announced plans to add sponsorship deals with football teams in the UK, France and Sweden to its 2011/2012 marketing strategy. Amongst other things, Hankook will now embark on an advertising campaign utilising hoardings at football stadiums belonging to teams such as Sunderland. This means the tyre firm will be present in the German Bundesliga, the English Premier League, Ligue 1 in France, Serie A in Italy, Primera Division in Spain as well as the Russian Premjer-Liga altogether.
Maxxis has honoured its three decade long relationship with ExxonMobil Chemical (EMC) by naming it as a Best Supplier. Maxxis has purchased butyl products, used in the manufacture of its tyres, from ExxonMobil Chemical for more than 35 years and the award recognises the two companies’ history of joint technology development as well as EMC’s leading–edge technology and advanced technical support.