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GM, Virginia Tech to establish tire test center

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General Motors Co. and Virginia Polytechnic Institute have joined forces to create a National Tire Research Center (NTRC) that will be set up in Southside, Va.

The $14 million center will conduct independent testing "with a focus on increasing research in green technology," according to a press statement from the college.

"The NTRC will provide the automotive industry with testing capability that is necessary to engineer and develop tires that will provide higher fuel economy and lower emissions than are currently available. Automotive and tire manufacturers have long needed access to the NRTC's level of testing capabiliy."

The facility will house a newly designed force machine to test passenger, light truck and racing tires. It also will employ state-of-the-art rolling resistance machinery.

"Data provided by the NTRC will accelerate the development of (green) technologies and enable another significant leap in the use of computer-aided engineering simulation in automotive engineering.

"GM engineers and scientists and Virginia Tech faculty members will work together to conduct research and testing, thus enabling the industry to more rapidly introduce vehicles with newly developed technology."


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