Submitted to: Annual Meeting and Expo of the American Oil Chemists' Society
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/31/2004
Publication Date: 5/1/2005
Citation: Sharma, B.K., Adhvaryu, A., Erhan, S.Z. 2005. Vegetable oil-based lubricants: improvement in oxidation and low temperature stability. Annual Meeting and Expo of the American Oil Chemists' Society. p. 66. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Recently, there has been a steady increase in the demand for environment friendly lubricants, due to unfavorable impact on the environment by mineral oil based lubricants especially in loss lubrication, military applications, and in outdoor activities such as forestry, mining, railroads, dredging, fishing and agriculture hydraulic systems. The uncertainty in the petroleum supply due to political and economical reasons has further stimulated the research in this area to reduce the dependence on foreign oil. Vegetable oils have the capability to contribute towards the goal of energy independence and security due to their naturally renewable resource. Vegetable oils are promising candidates as base fluid for eco-friendly lubricants because of their excellent lubricity, biodegradability, better viscosity-temperature characteristics and low evaporation loss. Their use, however, is restricted due to low thermo-oxidative stability and poor cold flow behavior. This paper presents a systematic approach to improve the oxidation and cold flow behavior of vegetable oil derivatives. Among the various possible avenues available, the combination of chemical additives and high-oleic vegetable oils offer the best option for achieving the ultimate goal. Vegetable oil-based lubricants formulated using the above approach exhibit superior oxidative stability, improved low temperature properties such as pour points and better wear properties compared to some of the commercially available industrial oils such as bio-based hydraulic fluids, biodegradable oils for heavy equipment and bio-based drip fluid for agriculture equipments. The above vegetable oil-based formulations compare at par with petroleum-based lubricants for use in high-temperature and high-pressure applications and often outperform the competition in some of its properties.