ATOM - Advanced Tyre Operation Module
Innovative tyre manufacturing technology developed by Toyo Tires in-house.
What is ATOM?
It is a new production process for the manufacture of the necessary parts and materials for tyres, in which a thin, approximately 15 mm wide, band-shaped rubber strip is wound and glued and is extruded onto a rotating construction drum. In the conventional production method, tyre parts, such as wide treads, are wound around a building drum. The two edges are aligned and laminated together to make a green tyre. The portion where the edges are laminated together is called the "joint". In contrast to this, the ATOM production method does not produce any joints, as occurs in the conventional production method, and is therefore referred to as "seamless".
Improvement of tyre uniformity
Since there are no large joints, the uniformity of the tire has improved dramatically. When the tread is formed with a conventional thick and flat rubber sheet, a large seam is created which can unbalance the tyre. Since ATOM's tyre is formed by winding a long and thin rubber strip, there is only a small cut at the beginning and at the end, which drastically reduces the impact on the tyre's imbalance.
By combining the preparation process of the parts with the construction process and the more compact design, we were able to reduce the space required for the equipment by approx. 35% compared to the conventional production method.
Drastic reduction in lead time
Due to the combination of the part preparation process with the construction process, it is no longer necessary to store intermediate stocks such as extruded parts. As a result, the lead time has now been reduced to 1/5 of the conventional production method.
Realization of multi-product and small series production
Thanks to the automated conversion and management with the help of computers, multi-product and small-batch production was introduced. In the conventional production method, tyre parts have to be changed for each type of product, which means that time is lost in changing product types. On the other hand, it is possible to manufacture different parts with ATOM through a computer-controlled program change, so that an efficient multi-product and small series production is possible.
Potential for expansion overseas
The more compact design of the production facilities and the computer-controlled production in small numbers have drastically reduced time and costs. This has made it easier to set up factories overseas. In 2017, 45% of the passenger car tyres produced by Toyo Tires were made under ATOM.