Tyre Technology is an amalgamation of science and engineering. It is dominated by physics, chemistry, mechanical and chemical engineering, says P.K.Mohamed, Chief Adviser – Research & Technology and Member of Management Board, Apollo Tyres Ltd. in an exclusive interview with Rubber Machinery World.
Mohamed is a soft-spoken and an accomplished tyre technologist with 5 decades of experience in the field of Tyre Technology and Manufacturing. When you read this passionate interview of his journey from a college lecturer to a well-known tyre technologist, you will observe struggles, challenges, achievements, dedication and loyalty; and importance of continuous education – a complete package of learning and leadership wisdom for new generation of aspiring professionals in tyre industry.
Mohamed is a Fellow Member of the Rubber and Plastic Institute London, Member in the Management Board of Apollo Tyres Ltd, Industrial Advisory board of Centre for Tyre Research, USA, IRCO and Area Director of American Chemical Society Rubber Division. Mohamed is also the Chairman of Indian Tyre Technical Advisory Committee (ITTAC), Technology Environment Safety and Standard (TESS) group of ATMA and past chairman of IRI. He has several international publications to his credit.
Mohamed’s exceptional knowledge, clarity, relevance and insight on the various aspects is awe-inspiring. I consider it a privilege to know him and present his thoughts to you in our “Know A Leader” Series.
I urge you not to miss reading this complete interview online on our digital edition (please click on the image above). You will immensely gain from his wisdom shared through passionate narration of personal experiences growing Apollo’s technology might; know his views on changes in rubber compounding, future of tyre building, new ideas energizing the tyre industry, sustainable profitability, automation, notes for equipment manufacturers, and machinery selection advice for buyers.
Here’s one teaser Q&A below, while the full interview has 10 questions.
Q6) Tyre design is a fascinating topic though few people really understand the differences in design between brands. How has the design of tyres really changed during as you witnessed it? What were the key factors driving this change?
Tyre technology is an amalgamation of science and engineering. It is dominated by physics, chemistry, mechanical and chemical engineering. Tyre is a product which is a unique combination of steel and rubber.
Steel is responsible to withstand all stresses experienced by the tyre and rubber is responsible for taking care of its strain. Such an intelligent sharing of stresses and strain is rarely seen in any other product other than a tyre. So it is a challenge for the tyre engineer to design a carcass of a tyre with minimal strain on material when the same is stressed by inflation, vehicle load or traction loads. This challenge further increases when it comes to the tread design. Tread is responsible not only for providing adequate traction, mileage, and water drainage but also need to cater to other performance requirement of rolling resistance and noise. It is noticed that, several new concepts such as natural inflated profile (NIP), and Tension Controlled Optimized Theory (TCOT), have been tried by several companies but the tyre technologist is yet not very successful in creating a carcass which can withstand under inflated condition and provide the same performance. This still remains as a challenge. In the case of tread, several developments have taken place to enhance water drainage & traction improvement, reduction in foot print pressure & noise and improvement in aesthetics and aggressive looks. While the pattern design methodology followed by many companies generally follow same guidelines, significant deviations are seen recently to meet the new-found challenges in meeting label values in RR, traction and noise. In depth understanding is required to make significant alterations in tried and tested designs to meet ever-increasing performance requirements and advanced design simulation tools are of great use for the tyre designers in this process. With the usage of new materials and improvements in compound properties, tyre technologists are now trying to tune the behavior of new compounds in different designs for optimal performance in a given operating condition.
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