Qingdao, China – Chinese machinery maker Mesnac is adding new rubber material offerings to its portfolio as part of a strategy to turn itself into a comprehensive supplier to tire makers.
The company plans to launch semi-finished tire components made from wet-mixed compounds using liquid synthetic rubber. The materials have been developed jointly by its subsidiaries EVE Rubber and Ecombine as well as Versalis, the petrochemicals arm of Italian oil and gas giant Eni.
“Mixing is the most costly, energy-consuming, space-taking process in a tire plant and is the hardest to automate,” said Long Jinjun, Mesnac’s CFO and vice president in charge of overseas sales on the sidelines of a Chinese tire smart manufacturing forum held this September at the company’s Qingdao HQ.
With the new material, added: “future tire plants could be called satellite plants with much less investment required – we’ll supply the semi-finished components based on their flexible demand and they could start with the afterwards process. Each [automated] plant will only need a few dozen employees.”
A full report on this development will appear in the Nov/Dec issue of European Rubber Journal print magazine. The issue includes our annual Global Tire Report, published in association with Tire Business – a US sister title to ERJ.