However, this is no simple swap. Tire compounding and development is a highly sophisticated process, and each element affects the properties and performance of the formulation’s other ingredients, as well as the performance of the final product. Manufacturers are striving to understand the impacts of new anti-degradants from cradle to grave.
Our global team of testing experts can design and conduct integrated studies and custom testing protocols to get you the answers you need as you strive to find solutions. Our services range from material chemistry and whole product testing to environmental fate and toxicology studies.
Implementing a solution to the 6PPD challenge starts with finding a suitable alternative that serves the same function and complements the other compounds in a tire formulation without altering performance.
Material Chemistry and Physical Properties Testing
Investigating the properties and performance of alternative compounds to 6PPD is a complex undertaking, with many perspectives to consider. Smithers is proud to offer comprehensive material chemistry
and physical properties
testing capabilities to support a comprehensive understanding of every alternative available. We offer qualitative and quantitative composition analysis of anti-degradant materials and rubber specimens, including samples excised from tires. Our physical testing capabilities include product qualification and property assessments of alternative anti-degradants, performance and benchmarking evaluations for different types and loadings of anti-degradants, and regulatory compliance. We also have multiple small-batch compounders on site for custom mixing studies
of model tire compounds.
Our world-class extractables and leachables
experts can design custom studies to qualify and quantify chemical constituents and concentrations. Our laboratories are outfitted with sophisticated instrumentation to detect trace amounts of volatile, semi-volatile, non-volatile, and elemental impurities.
Because 6PPD-quinone is the product of ozone exposure, understanding the relationship between alternative materials and ozone is vital to identifying a suitable alternative to 6PPD. Smithers can recreate a wide range of ozone exposure conditions
in a laboratory setting in order to study how compounds, excised samples, whole tires, and antiozonant packages react to different concentrations. Samples can be subjected to static or dynamic strain while under test.
Our sample prep
team has mastered a wide range of sample preparation techniques, so our clients choose from a number of testing strategies. Our methods include abrasion
protocols that mimic a variety of road surfaces, tread removal, and sample cutting. Smithers has also collaborated with clients to create standardized cryogrinding protocols for generating fully processed, laboratory-ready, tire particulate blends.
Product Testing & Validation
Smithers has been an integral part of the tire industry since 1925 and offers whole tire testing
on multiple continents. Our global tire testing laboratories are equipped for a wide range of performance, durability
, and regulatory tests, on rigs and on vehicles. Our capabilities include accelerated aging
, indoor tread wear
, and traction testing
on dry, wet, snow, and ice surfaces. We also offer dynamic ozone exposure testing on both tread samples and whole tires.
Environmental Fate & Ecotoxicology
Smithers offers standardized and custom environmental studies
at our laboratories in the United States and United Kingdom. Our experts design environmental fate
, environmental metabolism
, and ecotoxicology studies
for investigating the overall effects of tire particulates on the environment and specific flora and fauna populations. Our team is equipped for both laboratory and field-based studies to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the impacts of compounds on the environment.