Tire Technology International Awards for Innovation and Excellence 2019 shortlist – as supplied by organisers UKI Media & Events. Winners to be announced at gala dinner event on 6 March
Test World (Millbrook)
Test World introduced the world’s first indoor winter tire test facility (opened in 2012 offering snow and ice traction and braking. Snow handling was added in 2015). Following investment by Millbrook to meet industry demand, the facility was extended in 2018 and now offers indoor wet and dry braking and longitudinal aquaplaning. Test World is the first in the industry to offer natural snow, ice and wet and dry asphalt in one location, 365 days a year. Independent control of surface temperature and air temperature sets the facility apart, allowing for testing in optimal conditions and exploring specific aspects of tire performance such as traction and braking on black ice. In addition, studded tire wet and dry braking tests can be performed in the facility. This multi-service approach saves tire manufacturers’ time and improves test quality.
From the beginning of 2017, Uzer Makina has undertaken a comprehensive period of change and now sees two years of hard work starting to pay off. This includes new machine investments, modernization and replacement of existing machines, conducting various R&D studies, adding new products to the product line, increasing quality and quantity of the personnel and so on. These efforts resulted in a dramatic increase in the demand both in curing mold and press businesses which led the company to decide to increase capacity for both product categories. Uzer Makina has invested in a facility dedicated to its press business, just across from its main building. In June 2018, we moved curing press production to this new building and the remaining space in the main building was reallocated for expanding curing mold production. The company also increased its presence in different markets such as India, Russia, South Africa, Brazil & UK. Uzer Makina increased revenue by 25% compared to the previous year, reaching €60 million.
Rodolfo Comerio applied a new technology for calendering rubber, which enables tire manufacturers to produce the best quality material ever produced. This makes it possible to reduce the thicknesses of the rubberized material and reduce production waste, leading to cost savings. The new technology has been implemented in numerous calenders produced in recent years.
Global Center for Automotive Performance Simulation has invested in a new static fixture – used by multiple OEMs and motorsport teams. Expands lateral and longitudinal stiffness measurements, providing data which is key to creation of FTire models that are accurate. The company’s expanded capacity also means decreases in time and costs for testing tire makers.
Very active in pushing concepts and design studies for next-generation tire facilities. Pursuing development of hybrid (energy recovery systems) technology in factories, as well as ideas of micro-factories – small, more specialized facilities dotted around the globe.
Expanded test capabilities at lab in China, expansion at Michigan facility, and has upgraded capabilities in Ohio to handle larger rim diameter wheels – opening up greater scope for SUV and truck tire and wheel testing. Also continues to consistently upgrade capacity and refresh machine lineups, and conducts studies on tire industry to stay ahead of OE requirements.