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Materials

BASF supports Chinese shared bikes

by Jean-François Tremblay
October 2, 2017 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 95, ISSUE 39

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Credit: Ofo
Polyurethane tires support an Ofo bicycle.
Credit: Ofo
Polyurethane tires support an Ofo bicycle.

BASF will supply noninflatable bicycle tire materials for Ofo, one of China’s leading suppliers of shared bike services. Used in tandem with a smartphone to obtain unlocking codes, Ofo’s service allows users to pick up and drop off bicycles wherever they want. Allegedly lighter than an inflatable rubber tire, the tire is made of two layers of Elastopan polyurethane. The outer layer provides wear, abrasion, and chemical resistance, while the inner layer, featuring a different material density, provides bounce and comfort. The use of polyurethane instead of rubber improves durability and avoids flat tires, BASF claims.

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