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Designing and industrializing processes

Michelin’s ability to design and industrialize specific processes is one of the keys to its success and represents a distinctive competitive advantage. Michelin intends to harness its traditional expertise to consolidate its technological leadership and meet its ambitious goals for sustainable growth.

Our knowhow is based on our ability to design and industrialize the processes required for the large-scale deployment of the Group’s innovations. We design processes which are not yet on the market or we adapt existing ones so as to integrate new components/materials with unique characteristics.

André Pallotta Advanced Research Director - Processes

Innovation and processes are indissociable

Michelin’s history features numerous disruptive innovations which would have remained on the drawing board without the company’s powerful industrial resources. Very early on in its history, Michelin developed process engineering skills to keep pace with its innovations; this knowhow is apparent today in its mastery of guiding and assembly processes for flexible composites as well as the development of multi-technology machinery from design right through to the final shopfloor settings. And by standardizing its processes, Michelin can guarantee identical characteristics wherever the products are made.

Michelin has the power to industrialize its solutions so as to mass produce its disruptive innovations. This enables it not only to consolidate its technological leadership in tires but to implement high-precision specialist processes on various scales which are crucial if it is to achieve its ambitious goals in new areas such as composites, hydrogen or health care.

Know-how boosted by open innovation

Michelin firmly believes that open innovation is a source of progress which can enhance its knowhow and therefore also partners with startups and works with academia on certain complex subjects in joint laboratories, such as FactoLab which studies innovative technology for tomorrow’s industry.

Moreover, the Group participates in several EU projects in particular in the field of materials and recycling. One example is the SoftManBot project studying “handling soft materials” or BlackCycle and WhiteCycle, consortia devoted to recycling.

Un employé Michelin teste la réalité augmentée dans un atelier
Augmented reality in a workshop
Déchets pneus usagés
Recovery of end-of-life tires

Engineering which also leverages Artificial Intelligence

Always ahead of the curve, Michelin leverages Artificial Intelligence (AI) to optimize its engineering processes by developing customized robotic solutions for the complex handling of flexible composites. To speed up the introduction of AI in its engineering, the Group is partnering with global leaders in the field of Artificial Intelligence and virtual solutions.

At Michelin, we have acquired knowhow internally which allows us to adapt processes so as to integrate new materials in the right place and at the right time in the semi-finished product manufacturing cycle.

Lionel Labeau Process Engineering Director

Integrated engineering, underpinning the Group’s “All-sustainable” approach

Michelin’s powerful integrated engineering function gives it wide scope for product design and assembly. This is a particularly valuable asset for Michelin which has set itself the goal of designing tires which contain 100% renewable and recycled materials by 2050. The use of materials which are bio-sourced or derived from recycled products inevitably impacts the manufacturing process as their properties and mechanical characteristics are radically different from conventional materials.

Developing processes offering exceptional performance in terms of energy efficiency and only producing limited scrap, designing processes allowing regenerated materials to be integrated into new product manufacture without compromising on quality, increasing tire lifespan by means of efficient retreading techniques... Michelin’s know-how in process engineering is pivotal to the Group’s All-sustainable approach which aims to drastically reduce the environmental impact of its activities. 

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