Bridgestone Americas Holding Inc. (BSAH) has renamed its Akron research center the Bridgestone Americas Center for Research and Technology.
The center was formerly known as Bridgestone/Firestone Research L.L.C. The name change reflects the broad and diverse role the center performs for the global Bridgestone Group of companies, the company said.
The center's mission is to develop new materials technology for tires and a wide range of products manufactured by the different companies within the Bridgestone family, with a significant focus on research to support markets in the Americas.
Over the years, the technical center has earned a respected reputation for being one of the leading polymer laboratories in the world, according to Bridgestone/Firestone. Some highlights of the center's accomplishments include:
* The first synthetic polyisoprene rubber (coral rubber), and the ensuing research that led to the company's entrance into commercial production of solution elastomers;
* Head-tail functionalized elastomers derived from heteroatomic initiators, used to improve fuel economy and wear in tires;
* Polymers with high structural regularity, used to introduce greater toughness into both tires and thermoplastics;
* Polymer resins for ultra-high damping materials, used in the latest digital data storage devices;
* Polyphosphazene ``semi-organic'' elastomers for applications with low/high temperature and flame-resistant requirements;
* Antioxidant and antiozone additives enhancing the life of tires;
* Pioneering work on the radiation chemistry of elastomers, leading to prevulcanization technology now used in the tire industry; and
* New modular tire manufacturing processes.