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Goodyear Dunlop Europe Plans RFID Trials for Bus Tires

The manufacturer, already tagging race truck and trailer tires, is now eyeing other commercial markets for the technology, in order to leverage its FleetOnlineSolutions program to share tire data between itself, owners and service providers.
By Claire Swedberg
Mar 12, 2012Goodyear Dunlop Tires Europe expects to conduct field trials of tires in the commercial sector later this year, similar to the way it has incorporated EPC Gen 2 passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags into the tires it manufactures in Europe for truck races, as well as for truck trailers used for hauling cargo. The upcoming trials are expected to include the tagging of bus tires. The deployment of radio frequency identification technology is part of the company's FleetOnlineSolutions tire-management program, designed with the help of British software firm Datalinx, to capture and store data regarding individual tires. By logging onto the FleetOnlineSolutions Web site, tire owners, service providers and Goodyear Dunlop can share that information.

The company first tested the racing tire RFID application in 2009 on racecars at the British Touring Car Championship (see British Touring Car Championship Tracks Tires). Field trials involving the trailer tires were performed in 2011, including on the tires of the 3,100 trailers operated by logistics services provider Ewals Cargo Care.


Boris Stevanovic, marketing director of Goodyear Dunlop Tires Europe's truck tires division
Goodyear is using the tags it already builds into some of its tires for its own purposes, as well as to benefit customers. "There is a need for RFID, both in manufacture and use," says Boris Stevanovic, the marketing director of Goodyear Dunlop Tires Europe's truck tires division. The tags—which have been installed in all the company's European truck racing tires (Goodyear 315/70R22.5), and in Goodyear Regional RHT II trailer tires (size 435/50R19.5)—are read at multiple points along the manufacturing process, in order to provide work-in-progress data. The tire company also utilizes the tags to identify certain tires arriving at its stores or service providers for retreading.

End users can read the tags to track tires used on fleet vehicles, such as company trailers, or at European truck-racing events. According to Stevanovic, the Regional RH II trailer tires being tagged are the most common size in use for trailers that fall within the European Union's 4-meter (13.1-foot) height limit. However, he declines to reveal the quantity of RFID-enabled tires in use in Europe.

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