An open house event for tire industry professionals and partners was held at the facility to provide a first look at the new MTS Flat-Trac® CT Plus Tire Test System and guided tours of the expanded facility.
Six of the top global tire manufacturers, including Bridgestone Americas, Continental Tire, Cooper Tire & Rubber, Goodyear Tire & Rubber, Hankook Tire, and Michelin North America, partnered with Smithers to bring this new capability to the Ravenna testing lab. The expansion also created additional space for offices, conference rooms for client and project meetings, storage, and space for additional testing capabilities that are currently in development.
“This expansion at the Ravenna laboratory allows us to offer enhanced capabilities, increased capacity, and even more comprehensive service for our clients,” said Dr. Jim Popio, Vice President, North American Operations. “We thank the partner companies who have collaborated with us to address this need to accommodate larger tires for testing as well as the need for more demanding testing conditions. Thanks to their support, Smithers is strengthening our service portfolio in an automotive market that increasingly favors larger vehicles.”
The new CT+ tire testing system at the Ravenna test center allows Smithers to conduct assessments on most passenger car and light truck tires on the market today by simulating real world driving conditions and collecting tire performance data. The machine provides higher wheel torque as well as increased longitudinal and lateral load limits. It is engineered to deliver accurate and repeatable measurements of tire force and moment (F&M) properties under steady-state and dynamic conditions in order to provide higher fidelity tire models, which assist in meeting validation and timing requirements.
Smithers operates laboratories in North America, Europe, and Asia, covering a wide variety of testing and consulting services from material chemistry and product durability testing, to tire, wheel, and winter testing. Smithers’ global network of ISO 17025 accredited tire test laboratories perform a wide variety of SAE, ASTM, ISO, UNECE and EC tests supporting raw material suppliers, tire manufacturers, and automotive OEMs.
Top image from left to right: Brad Ehrhardt, President, Portage Development Board; Kelvin Standard, Michelin; Knut Budde, Continental; Jim Fogarty, Hankook; Jim Popio, Smithers; Chuck Yurkovich, Cooper Tire; Steve Pressler, Goodyear; John Sabistina, Bridgestone; Frank Seman, Mayor of Ravenna