AKRON — Goodyear has built a version of its Assurance all-season tire using 70% sustainable-material content, demostrating progress toward its goal of creating a 100% sustainable tire by 2030.
"We set an ambitious goal in 2020 to create a tire made 100% from sustainable materials in 10 years, and our scientists and engineers have made great progress toward that goal," Chris Helsel, Goodyear's senior vice president, global operations, and chief technology officer, said.
"This is an exciting achievement that demonstrates our commitment to increasing the use of sustainable materials in our tires."
The 70% sustainable-material tire includes 13 "featured ingredients" across nine different tire components. Sustainable content in the tire includes soybean oil, rice husk ash silica, bio-based polymers, fabrics made from recycled bottles, renewable resins, chemicals and sustainably derived carbon blacks, Goodyear said.
Goodyear said internal performance indicators show the component properties deliver strong overall tire performance.
Goodyear found alternate ways to create carbon black — a key ingredient for compound reinforcement and tire longevity traditionally made by burning various types of petroleum products. Goodyear's new tire features three carbon blacks produced from methane, carbon dioxide and plant-based oil.
"Initial life-cycle assessments demonstrate either reduced carbon emissions compared with current methods of carbon black production or the use of bio-based or waste feedstock sources," the company said.
For years, Goodyear has worked with soybean oil in tires. The oil allows for greater temperature flexibility in the tire's construction, especially in cold weather. Goodyear utilizes soybean oil in tires like the Assurance WeatherReady, Eagle Exhilarate and Eagle Enforcer All-Weather.
While nearly 100% of soy protein is used in food and animal feed applications, Goodyear said a significant surplus of oil is left over and available for use in industrial applications.
Goodyear's new tire contains a unique variety of silica produced from rice husk ash, a byproduct of rice processing often discarded.
The tire also features polyester made from recycled from plastic bottles and other plastic waste by reverting the polyester into its base chemicals and reforming them into technical grade polyester feasible for tire cords.