Submitted to: Surfactants in Tribology
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/30/2012
Publication Date: 3/20/2013
Citation: Cermak, S.C., Evangelista, R.L. 2013. Lubricants and functional fluids from lesquerella oil. In: Biresaw, G., Mittal, K.L., editors. Surfactants in Tribology. Volume 3. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. p. 195-226.
Technical Abstract: Lesquerella fendleri is an oilseed crop belonging to the Brassicaceae (mustard) family that is native to the desert of the southwestern United States. The interest in this crop is due to the high level of hydroxy fatty acids (HFA) in the oil. The seed contains 33% oil, 23% protein, and 15% gums. The seed oil contains 54-60% lesquerolic (14-hydroxy-cis-11-eicosenoic) and 3-5% auricolic (14-hydroxy-11,17-eicosadienoic) acids. HFA is used in a variety of industrial applications such as lubricants, corrosion inhibitors, engineering plastics, plasticizers, emulsifiers, and coatings. The current main source of HFA is castor oil which contains 90% ricinoleic (12-hydroxy-9-octadecanoic) acid. Because lesquerolic acid is very similar to ricinoleic acid, products derived from lesquerella oil would have comparable properties as those obtained from castor oil. Castor and lesquerella methyl esters have been shown to enhance lubricity in ultra low sulfur diesel at concentrations as low as 0.25%. Estolides synthesized from lesquerella and castor FA esters with 2-ethylhexanoic acid yielded the best performing estolides to date and have outperformed commercial products in cold temperature properties even without additives.