Michelin Earthmover offers earthmover tires for all types of machines: surface mining, underground mining, quarries and construction, industrial handling and port.

Production process

State of the art technology used in the production of high quality tires

The production process

Tire Production

Performance is assured by virtue of the great care taken and quality that is built in at every stage of production.

Productivity, safety, and reduction of the environmental impact…Pushing these aspects of performance to the limit within the same tire is a real challenge! We achieve this result on a daily basis thanks to innovation and the continuous search for improved performance, not foregoing any of the quality of our production processes.

There are numerous stages involved in the manufacture of tires for Earthmover machines. It’s a complex production process which aligns the constraints of heavy industry with the demands of high technology.

To offer this level of excellence, the different stages in production follow a strict and methodical process associated with continuous quality control at all stages.

Preparation

The manufacturing process of an Earthmover tire involves around 200 components, ranging from raw materials (chemicals, carbon black, sulphur, etc.) to semi-finished products (steel cords, textile fabrics, etc.).

Components Production

Natural rubber 
Latex is collected by making an incision in the bark of the rubber tree. The plantations are to be found mainly in South East Asia, Latin America and Africa. When used in rubber compounds, natural rubber reduces heat build-up inside the tire when in use while also giving it high mechanical strength.


Synthetic rubber
In the tire industry, 60% of the rubbers used are synthetic rubbers made from hydrocarbons of petroleum origin. Due to the mechanical properties required by the components of the tire, we need to get the balance of natural and synthetic rubbers exactly right.  This balance varies according to the function required of the tire (wear resistance for the tread, resistance to stress for the sidewall, air tightness of the internal rubber).


Black Carbon
First appearing in tires in 1915, once carbon black is incorporated in rubber compounds, it increases their mechanical strength. It represents about 30% of the composition of rubber compounds and gives the tire its color. This color also serves a purpose as a defense against ultraviolet radiation to slow down cracking and crazing of the rubber. 


Additives
Additives promote the homogenization of mixings and make them easier to extrude, and improve their adhesion to the textile plies in casings or to steel cords.


Silica
Derived from sand, silica has properties which help improve the tear resistance of rubber compounds. 


Metallic reinforcements
Michelin introduced steel into the construction of the tire as early as 1934. This major technical breakthrough, associated with the development of a coating ensuring a strong physico-chemical bond between rubber and steel, was used on an industrial scale in 1937 in the MICHELIN Metalic tire for heavy goods vehicles. Since then, steel has constituted the principal structure known as the casing of all Michelin Earthmover and Industrial Truck tires. Metallic reinforcements give the tire strength and rigidity. 


Sulphur
Sulphur, a vulcanizing agent, makes rubber change from a plastic state to an elastic state. Its action, accompanied by retardants used simultaneously in production optimizes the action of heat when the tire is cured. 

Sulphur, a vulcanizing agent, makes rubber change from a plastic state to an elastic state. Its action, accompanied by retardants used simultaneously in production optimizes the action of heat when the tire is cured. 


Textile reinforcing
Textile has been used as reinforcement from the very beginning of tire manufacture. In 2001, thanks to an innovation in textile, among other things, MICHELIN Tires allowed the Concorde to fly again. Today, textile reinforcing plays an important role in certifying that high performance tires will run at very high speeds. The materials used today to make textile reinforcing are Polyester, Nylon, Rayon, and Aramid which bring resistance, endurance, and comfort to our tires.


Assembly 

Tire making and finishing are stages of paramount importance during which the skill and expertise of our experienced teams is an essential asset for achieving a level of excellence.

Curing

Curing converts the materials in the tire from the plastic state to the elastic state. This phenomenon, known as vulcanization, creates the composite structure between the different components of the tire. Vulcanization takes place in special presses using the combined action of heat and pressure. This stage may take up to 12 hours, depending on the size of the tire. It also gives the tire is shape and final appearance.

Quality control

From the receipt of raw materials to the moment the tires leave the factory, each stage is subject to strict controls. Monitoring and control  systems ensure that the production processes conform to Michelin quality requirements. After curing and before shipping, the Earthmover tire undergoes various verifications: visual, x-ray, ultrasound, uniformity, and architecture.

7 production sites throughout the world

2 sites in France, 1 in Spain, 1 in Canada, 1 in Romania, 1 in the United States and 1 in Brazil. The largest production factory is at Lexington in the United States, covering an area of 21 acres.

7 production sites

Lexington (USA)

Opening in 1998

Tires: 45’’ to 63’’

Certified ISO 9002 and ISO 14001


Campo Grande ( Brazil)
Opening 2007
Tires: 25’’ to 49’'
Certified ISO 9002 and ISO 14001


Vitoria (Spain)

Since 1969
Tires: 25’’ to 63’’
Certified ISO 9002 and ISO 14001


Le Puy en Velay (France)
Opening 1977
Tires: 25’’ to 49’’
Certified ISO 9002 and ISO 14001


Montceau-Les-Mines (France)
Opening 1971
Tires: 24’’ and 25’’
Certified ISO 9001 and ISO 14001


Waterville (Canada)

Tires: 24’’ and 25’’


Zalau (Romania):
Tires: 8’’ to 15’’


It’s due to well-trained teams of men and women who share a passion for challenge that Michelin is able to create the best tires in the world. By focusing on working conditions, the empowerment and safety of all our employees, including the 3500 people working in the Earthmover tire segment, Michelin has created a strong quality and performance oriented company culture which is at the heart of their production capability.


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