Testing, consulting, information and compliance services provider Smithers has acquired the Indoor Testing Division of Standards Testing Laboratories (STL), a transaction that includes all indoor tyre and wheel testing capabilities. STL will continue to own and operate its Fabricated Machine Division and Texas operations.
UTAC, which owns test centres including Millbrook and winter facilities in Ivalo, Finland has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with BlueBinaries to “position the two companies as end-to-end test solutions and services provider for mobility industry globally”.
Smithers has promoted Matt Kent to General Manager of the Smithers Tire & Wheel Test Center, a role in which he will lead the facility’s team in researching and developing new capabilities that align with the changing needs of Smithers’ clients in the tyre and wheel industry.
Two Goodyear associates based in Luxembourg have been killed in a vehicle incident at the Nürburgring on 9 August. Tyrepress understands from test industry sources that 39-year-old driver Christian Franck, a popular member of the tyre testing community and title-winning motorsport driver from Luxembourg, is one of the deceased. Goodyear told Tyrepress that it is assisting local authorities with their investigation into the incident. Goodyear representatives added that the company is “deeply saddened” that its associates had lost their lives and that its “immediate concern” is for the family, friends, and colleagues of its associates.
Testing of new tyre designs typically takes place at multiple proving grounds, with locations such as Finland or New Zealand tasked with all-season and winter testing. But fickle weather and human factors conspire to diminish the accuracy and repeatability of outside testing. Better to take the weather indoors and automate the process – which is precisely what Continental has done.
A new facility for testing Yokohama winter tyres entered operation on 5 January. Yokohama Rubber opened the indoor ice circle facility at its Tire Test Center of Hokkaido to evaluate the turning performance of car, bus and truck winter tyres on icy surfaces, a characteristic it considers, after braking performance, the “second most important tyre performance on icy roads.”
Apollo Tyres has opened a new Advanced Tyre Testing facility within its Global R&D Centre, Asia in Chennai, India. The new test centre features a Flat-trac machine and an anechoic chamber, which help define the dynamics and acoustics of tyres, leading to faster product development for both OE and replacement markets. The development of tyres for high-end passenger vehicles, EV specific tyres for passenger vehicles and high-end motorcycle tyres will be at the heart of work taking place within the new facility.
The ETRMA has spoken in support of the European Union’s (EU) goal of delivering cleaner mobility via its recently proposed Euro 7 emissions rules. However, the association which represents tyre manufacturers across Europe, also suggested that future rules on tyres should be based on “robust scientific evidence of their real-world impact on emissions”. Specifically, ETRMA supports the use of a UN-validated test method, which is currently being developed, to establish future EU tyre abrasion limits.
With the addition of a new high-and low-temperature rolling resistance testing machine at its tyre and wheel testing laboratory in Suzhou, China, testing, consulting, information and compliance services firm Smithers is equipped to conduct rolling resistance testing on PCR, LT and light-duty TBR tyres at ambient temperatures between 40°C to 40°C (-40°F to 104°F). The new machine will be fully operational and begin running client data this month.
As markets and events have reopened during the course of 2022, Triangle has hit the road in a significant way, meeting with and communicating to existing and potential customers alike at events and exhibitions across the continent including: Tire Cologne in Germany, Autopromotec in Italy and the Hillhead OTR event in the UK. Tyres & Accessories met up with executives in Germany, Italy and on home territory in order to find out more about Triangle’s latest products and its increasingly quality-focused European strategy.
An opening ceremony took place on 25 May for the largest proving ground in Asia, Hankook Technoring. Hankook Tire & Technology says the facility in Taean, South Korea will serve as a state-of-the-art research and development centre for its “most advanced products to come.”
BWR Motorsports GmbH has developed technology which enables Dynamic Mechanical Analysis (DMA tyre) testing to take place at the racetrack. Centred on a portable tyre testing unit called Motite, the system helps race teams across series such as Formula One and WEC to measure tyre grip levels and rank tyres on-track. The software allows an immediate grip level output and enables measurement and analysis to be carried out directly on the tyre.
Giti Tire has published details of independent tests undertaken by TÜV SÜD for both the GT Radial SportActive 2 and GT Radial FE2 tyre lines. It reports that this testing showed “excellent results against leading brands and direct competitors’ products.”
Hankook has announced the official opening of its newly constructed test centre on the premises of Applus+ in Idiada, Spain. All areas that previously had to be accommodated separately on the premises are now housed under one roof in the new workshop due to the constant growth in testing and development requirements over recent years.