none

ECO-FRIENDLY DANDELION RUBBER TYRES TRIALED BY CONTINENTAL

17-08-2015
by 
in 
Words on a tyre. 'Taraxa Gum'.

The WinterContact TS 850 P features a tread made entirely of natural rubber from industrially-cultivated dandelion roots, and it’s taken Continental an important step closer to reaching its long-term goal of making tyre production more sustainable and less dependent on traditional raw materials.

“After several years of intensive development work together with the Fraunhofer Institute, we are excited to be taking the first dandelion tires onto the road,” said Nikolai Setzer, Member of the Executive Board of Continental responsible for the Tyre Division.

“To get the most meaningful test results from the crop yield produced by our research project to date, we decided to build car winter tires, as they contain a particularly high proportion of natural rubber. We are continuing to pursue the goal of developing tyres based on dandelion rubber to readiness for series production within the next five to ten years.” 

Continental has the Contidrom proving grounds north of Hanover at its disposal for extensive tests under summer conditions. However, the first winter car tyres with dandelion rubber ‘Taraxagum’ tread will be tested at Continental’s test site in Arvidsjaur, Sweden, where the company traditionally tests the performance of its future products under winter conditions from December to April.

As a result of extensive research conducted together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology (IME), the Julius Kühn Institute, and the plant breeding company Aeskulap, in the past few years good progress toward cultivating a very high-yield and robust kind of Russian dandelion has already been made.

The long-term goal of the research project is to find an ecologically, economically and socially viable response to the increasing demand for natural rubber. This would ease the pressure on the traditional rubber tree plantations in the tropics. Additionally, the aim is to reduce dependency on natural rubber, which can be subject to severe price fluctuations on the commodities exchanges. Moreover, cultivating dandelions on previously unused land in temperate regions of Europe – closer to Continental’s European tire plants – would sustainably reduce logistics costs and the transport-related burden on the environment.

The project cluster being lead-managed by Continental also includes projects funded by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research, Nutrition and Agriculture. In May 2014, the RUBIN industrialisation project being funded by Continental was honored with the 2014 European GreenTec Award, an environmental and business prize, in the Automobility category. 

Related news & editorials

  1. 21.09.2018
    21.09.2018
    by      In
    Available now from Treotham Automation, iglidur RW370 is a novel polymer material that is qualified to the EN 45545 fire protection standard for use in railway applications. The high-performance igus plastic is available as lubricant- and maintenance-free plain bearings and also as a bar stock for... Read More
  2. 21.09.2018
    21.09.2018
    by      In
    Big Ass Fans reckons that its Haiku range offers the ultimate airflow solution paired with iconic design.
    The fans are designed and manufactured to provide silent, cooling comfort to both indoor and outdoor spaces. With a world reputation for excellence, Haiku uses ultra-efficient DC motors and... Read More
  3. 20.09.2018
    20.09.2018
    by      In
    In stock now at RS Components, the Harting PushPull V4 series of connectors are suitable for a wide range of industrial signal data and power applications.
    The modular range of connectors is ideal for flexible manufacturing operations where processes are converted or even relocated as the PushPull... Read More
  4. 20.09.2018
    20.09.2018
    by      In
    Responding to trends in both the power generation sector and in the industrial landscape, Lapp has developed its first power cable designed specifically to carry direct current.
    Although in principle today's AC power cables can be used for carrying direct current, research has shown that direct... Read More