"Rubber to Rubber" enters the 4.0 phase

EcoTyre enthusiastically welcomes the collaboration between Versalis, a leading company in the elastomers sector, and AGR, the company that developed the technological process of rubber devulcanization. The agreement provides for Versalis and AGR to collaborate to develop technological solutions and applications to increase and improve the reuse of recycled rubber, in particular elastomers that can be used in new products, including new tyres. This development will thus make it possible to move on to phase 4.0 of the From Rubber to Rubber project, that is, the development of the product at an industrial level.

Over the last 4 years, EcoTyre has gradually involved all the different operating players in the tyre chain, ELT treatment plants, rubber devulcanization plants, compound producers, tyre producers, up to the users of new tyres. The goal was visionary and extremely ambitious: to make it possible to reuse rubber derived directly from ELTs collected in Italy in new tyres or other rubber products, combining all the best existing or most promising Italian technologies.

"The transition to phase 4.0 of the project - underlines Enrico Ambrogio, President of EcoTyre - shows that the intuition of our consortium was correct: if I can get a new bottle from a glass or plastic bottle and new paper from a sheet of paper, this should also be possible for tyres sent for recycling. For this reason, we have promoted the project to all the players in the supply chain that made it possible to obtain and test on the road tyres containing recycled rubber derived directly from ELTs. Now we hope that the collaboration with the most important Italian chemical company will lead to industrialization, in the purest logic of the circular economy, thus giving a new future to the rubber obtained from the recycling of ELTs ".

It all started in 2016 from the  Rubber to Rubber project coordinated by EcoTyre with a very specific purpose: to make it possible to reuse rubber granules from ELTs in the normal production cycle of tyres or rubber products. The first milestone was reached with the development of a compound containing devulcanized rubber. The next phase was the application on tyre treads. Then we moved on to road tests which demonstrated the substantial technical and economic sustainability of the project. Thanks to the agreement, the 4.0 phase of the project is therefore fully entered, in which Versalis research, with its centers in Ravenna and Ferrara, will work for the formulation and technological development of new products in the identified applications that will be marketed through the Versalis Revive® product line.

"The End of Waste decree for ELTs - concludes Ambrogio - provided for the use of the so-called GVG (Granular Vulcanized Rubber) for the production of rubber products, certainly representing an incentive to achieve the goal we had set for ourselves. We are very proud to have believed in the Da Gomma a Gomma project which helped to develop this solution which represents an opportunity for sustainable development with interesting employment effects for our country, giving new life to thousands of tons of ELTs produced every year in Italy. ".

14 May 2021