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Strategic agreement with Milan Polytechnic for research in the tyre sector

Pirelli & C. S.p.A and the Milan Polytechnic today signed the JOINT LABS agreement for research and training in the tyre sector. The signing and the presentation of the agreement took place in the in Milan Polytechnic’s ’Aula Magna with the participation of Marco Tronchetti Provera, Pirelli Chairman and Chief Executive, Giovanni Azzone, Dean of the Milan Polytechnic and Giampio Bracchi, Chairman of the Fondazione Politecnico di Milano.

The agreement, which has a 3-year duration (2011-2014), is focused on the following fields of research:
- F1 tyres: with mathematical models that simulate tyre behaviour in terms of grip and wear in relations to the roughness of the surfaces of the different circuits;
- Materials innovation: de-vulcanization of tyres at the end of their life, nanocharges and biopolymers;
- Intelligent tyre (Cyber Tyre): with the development of mathematical models that
allow the chip contained in the Cyber Tyre to “interpret” the different conditions of the road surface.

With regard to the training activities, the Polytechnic will focus recruitment, placement
and training of engineers in Brazil, China and Mexico. These actions will be supported in coordination with the structures Pirelli has or is developing ion those areas.

“‘From technological transfer to technological cooperation’ – said the Dean Giovanni Azzone – is not only a slogan, but a new way of interpreting the relationship between Academia and the corporate world. Our goal is to create relationships of research collaboration oriented to the long term, with the most significant subjects and on themes that regard social and productive reality. No longer partners to whom we transfer the results of our research and license our patents, but partners in a course of growth, with whom we can share needs and skills, and guide the industrial direction of research appreciating its results. In this way the results of the process of evaluating research becomes more natural.”

“The agreement signed today with the Milan Polytechnic further strengthens an already consolidated collaboration and attests to our company’s constant commitment to supporting research and training. We are certain that Joint Labs, which represents a virtuous example of collaboration between university and industry, will give an important contribution to innovation in areas that we have identified as strategic for the future of our sector with the goal of further reinforcing our position of leadership in the Premium segment”, said Pirelli chairman, Marco Tronchetti Provera.

The collaboration between the Milan Polytechnic and Pirelli is long standing, beginning in 1870 when a newly graduated Giovanni Battista Pirelli is counseled by his professor Giuseppe Colombo to consider the chemicals industry, specifically the production of rubber.. Giovanni Battista Pirelli thus became the first person in Italy to introduce the industry of rubber processing into country, founding in 1872 the Pirelli & C. company.

There have been many collaborations between the Milanese institution and Pirelli over the years between university and industrial research, with aim of enhancing the synergies deriving from the activities of academia applied to the corporate world.

The main fields on interest have been:
- research in photonics for telecommunications with the CORECOM consortium;
- the mechanical sector in which from since 2001 11 research contracts in the tyre sector have been activated with studies, verifications, resistance tests and modeling of tyre-road interaction.

Also thanks to the rapport between the Polytechnic and Pirelli the “Fondamenti Chimici della Tecnologia della Gomma e dei Compositi” faculty has been formed, aimed at the study of innovative materials and the application of nanotechnology for the development of new generation tyres.

Pirelli is also a founder of the Fondazione Politecnico di Milano, which was launched by Tronchetti Provera in April 2003. There have been many projects realized together and, as the president of the foundation Giampio Bracchi commented: “if eight years ago the Fondazione looked like a gamble, today it is a reality recognized at the national level. Our success depends to a large extent on the commitment and participation of those, like Pirelli, believed in us, who supported us and invested research and innovation.. Today’s event demonstrated how the rapport between the Fondazione Politecnico and Pirelli is solid and productive. It is a renewed promise of collaboration and is testament to an exemplary relationship.”


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