On the 22nd of November at the Smithers rCB Conference, Michelin and Bridgestone formally announced their co-operation on developing the recovered Carbon Black resource.
Michelin and Bridgestone Cooperate on rCB
Sander Vermeulen for Michelin and Jake Ronsholt for Bridgestone took to the platform and set out the background and the opportunity for pyrolysis in the tyre industry.
Vermeulen was clear that there was an opportunity for pyrolysis to have an impact on the amount of fossil fuel used for virgin Carbon Black used in tyres, but there were challenges. “Many operators had proven small scale industrial pyrolysis could create the required rCB.” He said; “However, there was no consistency and no standards and there was a lack of consistency and specification wen scaled up to large commercial operations.”
Ronsholt and Vermeulen agreed that the tyre manufacturers had failed to communicate what their requirements and specifications were, and that had to change. There needed to be clarity from the tyre manufacturers what specification and characteristics any rCB needed to have. This was why Michelin and Bridgestone were coming together.
Society, Government and pressure groups were lobbying for increased environmental sustainability, and this was now key to how Michelin and Bridgestone would work in the future. Despite being competitors, they had to co-operate to create the market and the conditions for greater use of recycled materials, in particular, recovered Carbon Black.