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Demand For Green Tires Drives Innovation in Rubber

Consumers worldwide are shifting toward “green tires” with lower rolling resistance, which results in increased energy efficiency and decreased fuel costs and carbon emissions. In response, manufacturers are increasing production of green tires that minimize rolling resistance without sacrificing safety (wet grip) and wear. 

Demand for Green Tires Drives Innovation in Rubber Infographic Small

To answer the demand for “green tires,” Trinseo added new grades to its range of SPRINTAN™ Solution-Styrene Butadiene Rubber (S-SBR). These grades of functionalized SSBR allow an optimum balance of low rolling resistance and high abrasion resistance, and, if desired, reduced stiffness at low temperatures, which boosts snow grip potential in winter tread applications. 

In addition, Trinseo developed an oil-extended S-SBR that enables tire manufacturers to move up the boundary of the “magic triangle.” The magic triangle consists of three key characteristics: rolling resistance, wet traction and abrasion resistance. Usually, optimizing one characteristic diminishes another. However, Trinseo’s oil-based SSBR makes it possible to improve the rolling resistance—wet traction balance—without having a negative effect on abrasion resistance and, therefore, the life of the tires. 

How does Trinseo’s S-SBR technology help reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions? Lower rolling resistance in tires means that drivers use less energy to travel the same distance. Tires can account for 20 to 30 percent of total automobile fuel consumption. By using lower rolling resistance tires produced with functionalized SSBR grades from Trinseo, a driver can reduce fuel consumption up to three percent. Over a typical life span of a set of tires – about 45,000 kilometers – that could mean savings of up to 80 liters of fuel compared to traditional tires.* 

To meet increasingly strict and demanding market requirements and standards, Trinseo is developing its neodymium rubber (Nd-BR) capability. In adding Nd-BR capability, Trinseo is helping its customers respond to one of the most important trends in the tire industry—the increasing need for more sustainable products.

* Trinseo calculation