Applications of radiation technology in tire industry
The application of EB irradiation in tires started in the late 1950s. In 1957, a whole tire was successfully cured by Goodrich by 60Co Irradiation. However, to date. there have been few open publications on the radiation curing of whole tires. In the tire industry, the main purpose of irradiation is to prevulcanize parts of tires, in order to reduce costs and improve product quality. In the 1980s, the American Firestone Company built the world's first radiation prevulcanization production line for tires, and then America's largest tire company Goodyear also adopted the same technology. This technology was promoted and developed successively in tire companies.
Table 3.5 shows the product technical indices of the compounds of tire parts after finishing the heat vulcanization with and without radiation prevulcanization. It can be seen that the green strength and the percent recovery of the rubber increase greatly after radiation prevulcanization.
EB辐照在轮胎中的应用始于20世纪50年代后期。 1957年，Goodrich通过60Co辐照成功地硫化了整个轮胎。但是，到目前为止，关于整个轮胎的辐射硫化的公开出版物很少。在轮胎行业中，辐照的主要目的是预硫化轮胎的部件，以降低成本并提高产品质量。 20世纪80年代，美国凡世通Firestone公司建造了世界上第一条轮胎辐射预硫化生产线，而美国最大的轮胎公司固特异也采用了相同的技术。该技术在轮胎公司中相继推广和开发。
The application of radiation prevulcanization in tire components has several advantages. First, it can improve the green strength(GS) of rubber, to ensure tire components in the process of forming dimension stability. Second, it can reduce the thickness of various components, to increase the dosage of synthetic rubber and reuduce the cost. Third, it can speed up the curing speed, save energy energy consumption, and improve the degree of uneven curing during the vulcanization process, which is caused by the temperature difference between the inside and outside of the tire. EB radiation prevulcanization can increase the rubber adhesive strength, reduce the rubber hysteresis loss and heat build-up, hereby improving tire performance.
As early as 1950s, Firestone Co. Ltd. first carried out a research program designed to estimate possible applications of radiation to tyre manufacturing process. After more than twenty years, the company finally completed the first tyre radiation pre-vulcanization production line in the world. Pre-vulcanization of body ply is irradiated by E-beam for manufacturing of radial tyres to reduce the production cost of tyres byenhancing the green strength before crosslinking of rubber sheet. Immediately after introducing, the “radiation pre-vulcanization” concept attracted lots of foreign tyre companies to invest huge sums, and subsequently applied radiation pre-vulcanization technology in the tyre production, thus covering the following world-famous tyre manufacturers, such as Bridgestone, Michelin, Goodyear, and Continental In 1988, the output value of North American radiation vulcanized tires had reached $13.5 billion as shown in the table below.
Up to 2005, more than 60 low-energy accelerators were installed in the tire industry of Japan. More than 93% of radial tires are prevulcanized by irradiation in Japan. European and American tire companies have also applied EB radiation prevulcanization in the tire industry, but the number of production lines is smaller.
Research on radiation vulcanization of rubber started in the 1960s in China, but no EB accelerator equipment was available for rubber at that time, which restricted the industrial application of radiation prevulcanization in tires. In 2004, the National Development and Reform Commission initiated a special support program for "nonpowered nuclear technology industrialization of high technology, " and radiation vulcanization of rubber was selected as one of the radiation technologies supported by the program. With government support, this technology was successfully applied in one company, and it was confirmed that radiation vulcanization could improve the stability of tires and reduce the thickness of tire carcasses. In 2009, Henan Isotope, Aeolus Tire Co., and CAS jointly developed radiation prevulcanization application in production of truck bus radial tyre, "and finished trial production of an all-steel heavy truck radial tire(12.00R2018 154/149 K). At present,It has also been used in domestic large tire enterprses sunch as Zhongce, Linglong, Triangle and Sailun,etc.
在中国，橡胶辐射硫化的研究始于20世纪60年代，但当时没有可用于橡胶的EB加速器设备，这限制了辐射预硫化在中国轮胎行业的应用。2004年，国家发展和改革委员会启动了“非动力核技术高技术产业化”专项支持计划，橡胶辐射硫化被选为该计划支持的辐射技术之一。在政府的支持下，该技术成功应用于一家公司，并证实辐射硫化可以提高轮胎的稳定性，减少轮胎胎体的厚度。2009年，河南同辐，风神轮胎有限公司和中科院联合开发了“辐射”预硫化在卡车客车子午线轮胎生产中的应用-“全钢重卡子午线轮胎（12.00R2018 154/149 K）的成品试制。目前，辐照预硫化技术已在一些中国大型轮胎企业中应用，如中策、玲珑、三角、赛轮等。
Equipment for radiation prevulcanization of tire parts
Basic structure of tires and the manufacturing process the basic construction of a radial tire is shown in Fig. 3.22. The tire manufacturing process is described below. First, in the tire building machine the semifinished products are assembled into green tires according to the tire building process, and then the green tire is made into a tire by vulcanizing with the vulcanizing machine at a certain temperature, pressure, and time. In the process of building, the tire carcass and inner liner parts are deformed, resulting in defects such as uneven distribution of polyester cord and cord migration. These problems can be overcome by increasing the thickness of the carcass and inner liner, but the material cost is higher. According to the tire parts recipe composition, structure and shape, radiation prevulcanization can be implemented to tire parts：carcass, belt, sidewall, tread, and flipper.
Figure 3.22 Basic structure chart of tire
轮胎的基本结构如图3.22所示。 轮胎制造过程如下所述： 首先，在轮胎成型机中，根据轮胎成型工艺将半成品组装成生胎，然后通过在一定温度，压力和时间下用硫化机将生胎硫化制成轮胎。在轮胎成型过程中，轮胎胎体和内衬层部件的变形会导致诸如帘线的不均匀分布和帘线迁移之类的缺陷。传统来说，这些问题可以通过增加胎体和内衬层的厚度来克服，但材料成本更高。但是，电子预硫化技术可以根据轮胎部件配方的组成，及结构和形状的分析，对轮胎部件如胎体带束层,胎侧,胎面及胎唇护布实施辐射预硫化。
轮胎预硫化设备整体运行图 Electron beam processing system
注：作品源于：（1）Radiation Technology for Advanced Materials:: From Basic to Modern Applications 编者：Guozhong Wu， Maolin Zhai， Mozhen Wang（2）辐射化工产业发展研究http://www.shjxfz.com/new/sh/news_show.asp?id=74，版权归作者/译者所有。若有侵权，请于我们联系，将第一时间删除相关内容。
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