First publishedon www.AggBusiness.com
BKT new Research and Development Centre in Bhuj, western India
Indian tyre manufacturer BKT has unveiled its new Research and Development Centre in Bhuj where two years ago the company officially inaugurated its showpiece production site.
BKT said the site in the state of Gujarat, western India, was starting up “a real change of pace” for the Indian multi-national company in the global off-highway tyre market.
The new R&D centre has been named Suresh Poddar Innovation Hub in honour of Suresh, the eldest of the Poddar brothers.
It is situated within an area of ten hectares called the Mahabirprasad Poddar Knowledge Centre (MPKC), in remembrance of BKT’s founding father, the late Mahabirprasad Poddar.
“Designed for organising all spaces from a completely functional viewpoint, the new Research & Development centre includes the best range of equipment and software available,” says BKT
“It is managed by an expert team of engineers, chemists and technicians dealing with any aspect pertaining to the technological development of BKT tyres: starting from designing a new tyre and creating compounds to improve product performance up to implementing processes for an efficient and customised production of cutting-edge tyres.”
Research will focus on new materials aimed at more sustainable and environmentally friendly elements. Another central point are all applicative aspects and options of nanotechnologies, especially in view of creating new components.
Close to the new centre there is a modern testing track, which allows for in-depth tyre performance tests simulating real application conditions to obtain updated and detailed data and analyses.
The company says the purpose is the continuous improvement of product quality and their ability to best adapt to the most differing off-highway applications.
It says the development of new materials and tyres in line with user expectations is essential for BKT to remain a central reference point in the farming, earthmoving and industrial sectors.
“Starting from today, we will be innovators, providing a strong impetus to research and development in the off-highway tyre sector,” says Dilip Vaidya, president and director technology BKT.
“In this role, we feel our responsibility to anticipate technological market trends. These new technologies are already partially available in the automotive and road transport sectors.
“Undoubtedly, in future they will also be applied to off-highway or OTR, such as driverless vehicles or remote-controlled container handling equipment, for instance.
“Yet, as soon as the original equipment industry develops so-called smart solutions, BKT will be ready to support these vehicles with likewise smart tyres, one of the reasons why the new Research and Development Centre in Bhuj has been built.
“By means of this great project, we are fielding all our know-how and competencies to enhance the performance of the products that are already on the market, since customer satisfaction is our priority.
“Our vision is to become a global research centre that wins recognition on a global scale as a place where innovation is bred and talents are grown as our real assets.
“Investments in R&D are the key to success and essential for competing within a complex global market with rapidly evolving needs.
“This is why we allot 4.5% of the group’s annual turnover to Research & Development confirming our determination to be one of the leading players in the off-highway market.”
A test track at BKT's new R&D centre