Researchers at Goodyear Innovation Center have found that soybean oil in tires reduces the tiremaker’s use of petroleum-based oil and increases tread life by 10%.
Besides the fact that tiremakers could use with 7 million gallons less annually, the rubber compounds manufactured with soybean oil blend easier with the silica from the tires, which can improve the plant’s efficiency and also reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption.
“Goodyear is committed to caring for the environment and communities, and use of soybean oil is proving to be another way to accomplish this goal,” said Jean-Claude Kihn, Goodyear’s chief technical officer. “Consumers benefit through improved tread life, Goodyear gains with increased efficiency and energy savings and we all win whenever there is a positive impact on the environment.”
Lawton already produced some prototype tires which will be tested at Goodyear’s Proving Grounds in San Angelo, Texas in the following months. If the results are positive, consumers will be able to buy the new type of tires beginning 2015. The United Soybean Board helps the company’s project with a grant of $500,000 for two years. On August 6th and 7th Goodyear will display a tire made with soybean at The Ford Motor Company’s research center in Dearborn, Michigan, an event sponsored by USB.