BKT has constructed a state-of-the-art new manufacturing factory on a site in Bhuj, Gujarat, in India at a cost of approximately US$500m. The facility sits around 100km from the Pakistani border and 60km from the Port of Mundra on the Arabian Sea.
After construction work had started in January 2011, an 8km-long pipeline for drinking water as well as 13km of electricity lines were laid. Completion of the factory is scheduled for the end of 2016 however the first tire rolled off the production line in March 2012. Upon reaching a daily production of 150 tons – approximately 50% of the maximum production capacity – the Bhuj plant was inaugurated at the beginning of December 2015.
Cutting-edge equipment installed there includes compound mixers, equipment for the production of steel rings and new vulcanizing presses for tires of all sizes.
Tires currently produced in Bhuj include 22 sizes of the Maglift solid tire and various measures of the Liftmax LM 81 tire, both for forklifts, in addition to the Portmax PM 93 in size 280/75 R22.5 for straddle carriers, and the giant Earthmax SR 45 Plus tire for dumpers.
Close to this facility, a new R&D Center focusing on new polymers and tread compounds is also being built. On the other side of the complex, a thermoelectric power plant provides electricity throughout the entire site. Water collection tanks provide water reserves even in drought.
On over 6 hectares of the Bhuj site, a small town for employees has been built including modern flats for 406 families, 90 rooms for university students, a mall, a green area, a recreation center, a medical center and a fire station.
More to come in the March issue of Tire Technology International.
January 5, 2016