Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company marked 75 years of expertise in tire testing with expansion of its facilities as the San Angelo, Texas proving ground. The company has set up two new expansion projects at the facility to further cement its position as the largest tire manufacturer in North America. Through this move, it has highlighted its commitment to performance evaluation in segments that range from sports cars to earthmover trucks.
The new facilities include a second vehicle dynamics area that comprises a paved pad sprawling over 324,000 square feet. Goodyear is also in the process of building an additional evaluation facility for off-road tire products. The new facility will have state-of-the-art equipment that can be used for testing the largest earthmover tires in the industry.
The proving grounds in San Angelo was established, which is Goodyear’s largest was established in 1944 in San Angelo, with its first test surface being built there in 1957. The San Angelo Proving Grounds facility has a number of tracks and test labs, giving Goodyear the capacity to conduct extensive on- and off-road tests of its products.
Chris Helsel, Goodyear’s chief technology officer said that the San Angelo testing facility plays a key role in Goodyear’s product development process, and the company would continue to invest in the facility’s capability to help it deliver innovative tires to its customers.
He added, “Countless applications in consumer and commercial tires, including the use of unique sustainable materials, advanced fuel efficiency technologies and even tires that can operate with no air have been tested at San Angelo.”
The San Angelo facility covers an area of 7,250 acres and this is inclusive of 58 miles of roads and track, 14 miles of fence and more than 200 test vehicles. Every year, Goodyear employees test about 20,000 tires annually. There are as many as 53 different test surfaces, which range from asphalt and concrete to bricks, blocks, dirt, mud and more.
The new vehicle dynamics area is optimized for tire testing in extreme wet conditions and is a precision-engineered paved surface with a 1-degree slope to enable constant water flow across the surface. All the water use din this area is recycled and reused.
Recently, Goodyear added a 250-ton, 25-foot-tall earthmover haul truck to its fleet in addition to making significant improvements in the testing and analysis of large off-the-road tires.
Goodyear also operates testing and proving grounds in other locations spread across the world including ones in Akron, Ohio; Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg; Mireval, France; Wittlich, Germany; and Ivalo, Finland.
Manju Mathew, an MBA in marketing, completed publisher training courses from the Oxford Brookes University and New York University. She started with marketing and PR roles before moving on to her current position as a full time writer. Currently living in Dubai, her life as an expat has sharpened her observation skills and flair for writing. She enjoys writing about luxury cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc even if she can only dream of owning them.
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