Two Employees Receive MEXT Science and Technology Award for Technical Development of Inner Liner Improving Fuel Efficiency of Tires


Tokyo - The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd., announced today that two of its employees had received "Commendations for Science and Technology by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology 2011" in the Development Category for their work on tire inner liner technology. With new material with the characteristics of rubber and resin, the technology makes possible an inner liner that substantially reduces air leakage from tires, contributing to the improvement of vehicle fuel efficiency.

Details of the commendation are as follows:

Development of inner liner using rubber and resin polymer alloy

Yuichi Hara

Manager, R&D Group No.2, R&D Dept., Research & Development Center Yoshiaki Hashimura Manager, R&D Group No.3, R&D Dept., Research & Development Center

An inner liner is affixed inside a tire to mitigate air leakage. Air naturally leaks from any tire, by which the air pressure decreases and rolling resistance increases, with an adverse effect on fuel efficiency. The inner liner developed by Yokohama Rubber uses a new material with a high level of balance between the low permeability of resin and the flexibility of rubber. The result is substantially reduced tire leakage. In addition, the thickness of the liner is only one-fifth that of a conventional one, yet it can mitigate tire leakage better, contributing to making the tire lighter. Thus, the evaluation encompassed not only the aspect of improving fuel efficiency via maintaining low rolling resistance and lighter weight, but also the conservation of material resources. The inner liner was released in 2009 under the name Advanced inner liner.