Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., LTD. has developed a new process development technology contributing to significant reduction in fuel consumption from the “nano processing” aspect of Nano Balance Technology. This is one of the fundamental technology systems for the rubber used in truck and bus tyres.
This has been used to achieve a high level of tyre rolling resistance and braking performance. In addition to launching the fuel-efficient tyre brand “NANOENERGY”, which balances these two contradictory levels of performance, Toyo Tires also uses it in their Flagship brand “PROXES”, thereby offering a range of high value-added products. Moreover, even in trucks and bus tyres, Toyo Tires has launched a series of products made by using low fuel consumption tread that has impressive heat generation based on the material design technology of Nano Balance Technology.
These days, the transportation devices that are the backbone of Toyo Tire’s social infrastructure must face environmental regulation, and deal with the subject of improving transportation efficiency. Improving fuel efficiency and sufficiency in longevity for the truck and bus tyres used in transportation vehicles is thought to be one way to resolve such issues.
Furthermore, Toyo Tires has used transmission electron microscope and SPring-8 and they have analysed dispersibility of filler present in rubber used for manufacturing tyres. Regarding the natural rubber used in truck and bus tyres, if the rubber compound is blended with a mixer, the filler cannot be uniformly dispersed in the solid rubber that is mainly used and it remains in the forms of agglomerate. When dynamic deformation is applied to this state, energy loss occurs due to contact of the fillers, etc, which becomes the main cause that adversely affects fuel economy.
For high level dispersion of filler in the compound, the company has developed and established a new nano process technology that optimizes the filler structure in the solid rubber before preparing the compound. From this, our processing method achieves the ideal state of filler where it is uniformly and highly dispersed even in solid rubber like natural rubber.
Toyo’s newly-developed nano process disintegrates carbon black in a special solution and disperses it at the molecular level in the initial compound creation process while stirring and coagulating natural rubber latex. The firm has further optimised this process so that they can reach their goal of “formation of highly dispersed filler at the molecular level”.
Improvements have also been made by focusing on the processing techniques of materials, and recently the company has succeeded in developing a rubber compound that can suppress the energy loss at the time of deformation by about 20% even in a rubber based compound made by using natural rubber etc.
As for this advanced Nano Balance Technology, Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., LTD. have set up an R&D facility building with the premises of our tyre factory in Malaysia, where they have already completed R&D and demonstration. In this summer, there are plans afoot to develop it as a production line, and within this year, the company plan to commercialize the development and production of new truck and bus tyres.