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Bridgestone’s University Challenge

Bridgestone has announced it will be supplying teams at the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge (BWSC) with tyres developed using 63% recycled and renewable materials, which will come as great news for UK based Durham University students who are participating in the race. The tyres, which are custom-designed to meet the unique challenges of the 3,000 kilometre route across Australia, mark the first use of the company’s new ENLITEN® technology in motorsport competition.

Durham University students have designed a three-wheeled asymmetrical catamaran-style car for the unique journey from October 22 to October 29, which will benefit from ENLITEN®, along with all other competing creations. The ‘challenger class’ car has been two years in development, with months of remote study and digital development taking place to firstly overcome the challenges of the global pandemic and eventually a sustainable vehicle with a cruising consumption of 1kWh.

Bridgestone has endeavoured to support safety in motorsport where drivers are repeatedly challenged under extreme conditions and situations. The company maintains immense pride and passion, and a relentless commitment to the evolution of technology, production, logistics, brand power, and talent development through motorsport. Bridgestone celebrates the 60th anniversary of its motorsport activities in 2023 and keeps the endeavour to support sustainable global motorsport.

  1. “ENLITEN®”: Bridgestone’s new technology for premium tyre design in EV era

Bridgestone has developed new tyres for the 2023 BWSC featuring ENLITEN®, the company’s new base technology for product design. ENLITEN® elevates conventional tyres by enhancing environmental performance while also exceeding the customer and market demands in product performance. Through the advanced performance attributes of ENLITEN® technology, Bridgestone is focused on increasing social value and customer value.

The ENLITEN®-equipped tyres supplied to the BWSC were designed to help teams meet the extreme demands during the 3000km event, including low rolling resistance, wear and weight. Bridgestone will customise tyres based on the needs from the teams to demonstrate the new ENLITEN technology and exceptional capabilities of the tyres. Bridgestone will further develop and deliver ENLITEN technology equipped tyres customised for customers through motorsport and conventional tyres.

  1. BWSC tyre made using 63% recycled and renewable materials

The tyres Bridgestone is supplying will include a tyre with recycled and renewable material ratio (MCN – Material Circularity Number) of 63%, which is an improvement compared to approx. 30 % in the 2019

BWSC event, The recycled and renewable materials used in development of these tyres includes recycled organic fibre, recovered carbon black, recycled rubber chemical, recycled oil, and reinforcement material using recycled steel. Furthermore, tyres supplied to the cruiser class were additionally developed using rice husk silica and carbon black recovered through pyrolysis of used tyre.

  1. Low carbon emission logistics in tyre shipping

For BWSC tyre shipment, Bridgestone chose to work with DHL, a leading logistics provider targeting zero emission by 2050. Through the use of DHL’s GoGreen Plus*3 solution, the transport of tyres to the BWSC will be a 100% carbon neutral shipment through a combination of using sustainable marine fuel (insetting) and compensation of emissions via VER Gold Standard carbon credits (offsetting).

”Bridgestone is passionate about contributing to a more sustainable motorsports future at the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge through our ENLITEN tyres made with 63% recycled and renewable materials, as well as our collaborative supply chain initiatives. We will demonstrate the new technology through the extreme conditions.” said Naotaka Horio, Director, Bridgestone Motorsports. “Additionally, as title sponsor, we are looking forward to helping young and diverse engineering minds from all over the world create breakthrough technologies in the BWSC that can play a role in a more sustainable mobility society of the future.”