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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Synthesis of Lubricants from Plant and Animal Sources

Authors
item Cermak, Steven
item Isbell, Terry

Submitted to: Annual Meeting and Expo of the American Oil Chemists' Society
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 11, 2005
Publication Date: January 4, 2005
Citation: Cermak, S.C., Isbell, T. 2005. Synthesis of lubricants from plant and animal sources. Annual Meeting and Expo of the American Oil Chemists' Society.

Technical Abstract: Consumers today are demanding more from their automobile lubricants then ever before. The use of renewable lubricants can meet these demands and at the same time lessen the demand for foreign oil. These new functional fluids, estolides, have shown great promise as a biodegradable lubricant. Estolides and their co-products compared favorably to commercially available industrial products such as petroleum-based hydraulic fluids, soy-based fluids, and petroleum oils; and usually outperforms the competition. Estolides are formed when the carboxylic acid functionality of one fatty acid links to the site of unsaturation of another fatty acid to form esters. A new series of estolides were derived from oleic acid and a cheap animal source of unsaturated fatty acids, tallow, in the presence of low equivalents of acid with no solvent at 60 deg C followed by esterification to the 2-ethylhexyl ester. These new estolides were evaluated as a lubricant. Physical properties (pour points, cloud points and viscosities) of the new estolide esters were compared to the homo-estolides and commercial lubricants. These new estolides show promise as a cheap alternative bio-based material.

Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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