Smithers Rapra’s Tire Technology Symposium Highlights Technical Trends Affecting Chinese Manufacturers

Dr. James Popio at the Tire Technology Symposium for Chinese manufacturersAKRON, Ohio - Smithers Rapra, a world leader in rubber, plastics and composites testing, held its first Tire Technology Symposium in China. The event, designed to bring the Chinese tire industry together to share technical knowledge, regulatory expertise and business insight, featured over 70 technical experts from companies throughout the industry supply chain including automotive OEMs, tire manufacturers and retailers.

Dr. James A. Popio, Vice President of Smithers Rapra’s North American operations kicked off the day of technical sessions with a history of Force and Moment testing. The session was designed to help fellow technologists understand the reasons behind such measurements and why they are a critical input to vehicle design.

“These measurements are made to allow vehicle makers (OEMs) to ride and drive tires in the virtual world. In addition, it allows them to do chassis, control and suspension design,” stated Popio. “For automotive OEMs and tire manufacturers alike, understanding how tire dynamics change with different driving conditions provides key data that can be used for performance measurements and is essential to creating tire models.”

The sessions continued with discussions by several industry experts on topics providing insight for Chinese manufacturers looking to enter and succeed in global markets. They included:

“It was amazing to see so many of the top tire technical minds from the Chinese tire and automotive industry in the room,” noted Derek Read, General Manager, Smithers Rapra’s Suzhou testing laboratory. “The Chinese market has experienced exceptional growth in volume, but also in technical knowledge and expertise. Our symposium provided the industry with a forum to learn and discuss the latest trends in tire testing technology.”

Smithers Rapra has supported the global tire industry since the company’s inception in 1925. Today, the company operates industry leading tire testing facilities in the United States, China and England along with a winter proving ground for tire traction testing in Michigan, United States. From material characterization and formulation chemistry to endurance testing and a wide variety of other tire testing techniques, Smithers Rapra provides the full supply chain with tire development support.

About Smithers Rapra

Smithers Rapra has been a trusted partner of the plastics and rubber industries for over 90 years. Our business is built around delivering a complete portfolio of rubber and plastic testing services to support a wide range of industry sectors including tire, automotive, polymer products, oil and gas, medical device, pharmaceutical, transport, packaging, industrial and consumer products. By integrating science, technology and business expertise, Smithers’ goal is to add value throughout the life cycle of our clients’ products. Please visit www.smithersrapra.com.

About The Smithers Group

Headquartered in Akron, Ohio, The Smithers Group includes Smithers Apex, Smithers Avanza, Smithers Pira, Smithers Quality Assessments, Smithers Rapra, and Smithers Viscient. Each Smithers Group company provides technology-based services focused on a defined market. As a group the diversity of market sectors and technologies provides stability and a platform for long-term growth. By integrating science, technology and business expertise, Smithers goal is to add value throughout the life cycle of our clients’ products, by utilizing testing, consulting, information, and compliance services. All Smithers companies are known by their clients as Trusted Providers of Innovative Solutions. For more information, visit www.smithers.com.


“The Chinese market has experienced exceptional growth in volume, but also in technical knowledge and expertise. Our symposium provided the industry with a forum to learn and discuss the latest trends in tire testing technology.”

Derek Read, General Manager - Suzhou Laboratory