Smithers has moved its tyre, wheel, and product testing operation in Suzhou, China into a larger 7,200 square meter building in the Xiangcheng district. As a result, the size of the product testing lab has increased by 90 per cent, with plans to invest in more testing equipment to further expand testing capabilities. In addition to laboratory space, the new building includes classrooms and conference rooms for on-site training and industry meetings.
Smithers, which provides testing and consultancy services, has upgraded its low temperature retraction instrumentation and capabilities at its rubber physical testing laboratory in Akron, Ohio. According to the company, the new instrument offers improved temperature control for low temperature retraction and the instrument is said to be significantly more efficient, which will improve turnaround times for customers.
Smithers Rapra is opening a new product testing laboratory in Suzhou, China. The 4,000 square foot facility provides air leak and burst, cleanliness, material properties, salt spray, and pressure, vibration, and temperature (PVT) testing. According to Smithers, the new lab will support the evolving automotive market in China with fluid transfer system expertise, combining with Smithers’ existing labs in Akron, Ohio; Lansing, Michigan; and Shawbury, UK to support global clients.
Smithers’ “The Future of Global Truck Tires to 2027” research reports that the value of this sector will reach $107.6 billion in 2017. With year-on-year growth forecast at 3.5 per cent across the next decade, this will reach $152.4 billion in 2027. After adjusting for price and raw material fluctuations, gains in tyre manufacturing productivity, and then consumer potential of greater value adding features; volume consumption of all truck tires will increase at a rate of 3.2 per cent per year from 2017–2027.
Rubber, plastics and composites testing specialist Smithers Rapra recently ran training at the Tire Technology Training Course, which was organized by The Rubber Institute of Chemical Industry and Engineering Society of China along with the Beijing University of Chemical Technology.
Smithers Rapra has launched new mixing technology at its lab in Akron, Ohio. The new MXI 1L Lab Kneader Mixer, installed at the company’s analytical laboratory, allows for higher precision and more efficient mixing of custom compounds.
Smithers Rapra has enchanced its tread wear testing capabilities for passenger, light truck and commercial vehicle tyres at its test centre in Ravenna, Ohio, USA. According to the company, the upgraded equipment and software can run a wide variety of drive profiles while supporting benchmarking and development requirements.
Rubber, plastics and composites testing company Smithers Rapra recently held its first Tire Technology Symposium in China. According to the research and testing firm, the event brought together about 70 members of the Chinese tyre industry to share technical knowledge, regulatory expertise and business insight. The symposium covered the industry supply chain, including automotive OEMs, tyre manufacturers and retailers.
New data produced by Smithers Rapra suggests the carbon black market has grown at an average of 5.4 per cent during the period between 2011 and 2015. As a results demand reached 13 million tons in 2015. To put this figure into context, global demand for carbon black was estimated at 10.7 million tons in 2011 – and this figure is said to represent “a good recovery” from the 15 per cent contraction between 2008 and 2009.
Tyre, rubber, plastics and composites specialist Smithers Rapra has announced that its operation in Suzhou, China has been certified to test to the United Nation’s Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) R117 standard by TÜV NORD. The company says adding the ECE R117 standard test capabilities for rolling resistance and road noise will support international tyre makers with testing systems that ensure the highest product integrity.
The Smithers Group has announced organisational changes within the Smithers Rapra/Smithers Pira operations in Europe and North America. The company has named a new vice-president and general manager for both regions, as well as a new managing director of global information business.
Smithers Rapra has appointed Rikki Lamba as vice president of North American operations. Prior to Smithers, Dr. Lamba worked for Excel Polymers LLC, a global supplier of custom elastomeric solutions with operations in the US, Mexico, the UK and China. Prior to Excel he was vice president of technology at Columbian Chemicals.
With the 30 November 2010 deadline fast approaching, Smithers is promoting its series of compliance seminars. According to the testing and research organisation, for many months attention has been focussed on the submission of lead registration dossiers to ECHA. However a new harmonised system for the classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures (CLP) has brought with it equally demanding deadlines.
Smithers Scientific Services Inc. (SSS) has published a “Tire Industry in China” research report. The 246-page paper was initially released simultaneously at CITExpo in Shanghai and ITEC in Akron, Ohio in September.
Michael J. Polovick has joined The Smithers Group based in Akron as vice president of human resources, a newly created position, responsible for overseeing HR activities at all of the Group’s member companies worldwide. Polovick brings more than 30 years’ experience as an HR professional.