The success of the bearings to isolate buildings above from traffic noise and vibration was built upon to study the feasibility of designing bearings for seismic isolation, and this ultimately led to shaking table tests using model bearings in a joint research program between MRPRA and the Earthquake Engineering Research Center of the University of California, Berkeley.
PHOTO : Figure 6 - wear performance of heavy duty truck tire retreads (MRPRA third service trial)
Current research at both RRIM and MRPRA aims to develop tests more directly indicative of processability which can be included as parameters in the scheme.
Work at MRPRA over the last 20 years has resulted in some interesting materials, but these have either been insufficiently thermoplastic or not economically viable.
Other new materials from natural rubber are under investigation at MRPRA and elsewhere, of particular interest are further thermoplastic blends, an oil-resistant thermoplastic elastomer, and low molecular weight liquid rubbers, either as adhesives or as process aids for rubber.
Improving the consistency in processing of raw natural rubber and developing new materials from natural rubber are two important aspects of MRPRA's role in protecting and extending the market for Malaysian natural rubber.
Initial computer studies established that the thinking was sound, and MRPRA then instituted extensive development and testing work in collaboration with the Earthquake Engineering Research Center at the University of California, Berkeley.
The wet grip and rolling resistance properties of epoxidized natural rubber have been mentioned already, and MRPRA is assessing its performance in tire treads.
Originally this money constituted the Malayan Rubber Fund, from which the Government of the Federated Malay States financed the activities of the Rubber Research Institute of Malaya (RRIM), the British (now Malaysian) Rubber Producers' Research Association (MRPRA) and the British rubber Development Board (BRDB).
The activities of RIM and MRPRA were, and still are, controlled through annual reviews of their research by a Coordinating Advisory Committee (CAC).