Machinery Lubrication

Machinery Lubrication May-June 2019

Machinery Lubrication magazine published by Noria Corporation

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 54 of 82

Oxidation could be described as the degra- dation of good oil gone bad. What was once a stable lubricant is now just sludge and varnish causing havoc in your equipment's system. How does this happen? What was true when your mother said hanging around the wrong crowd was bad is also true with your lubricants. A bad envi- ronment can have devastating eff ects on the quality and life of a lubricant. To keep your lubricant in optimum condition, the bad environment must be identifi ed and steps taken to prevent its destruction. Lubric a nt s a re v u lnerable to attack. Most non-synthetic lubricants are comprised of two components: mineral oil and addi- tives. e oil is a group of molecules made of hydrogen and carbon atoms. ese atoms have a positive attrac- tion for each other, connecting by a method called bonding. If the right amount of hydrogen and carbon is available, the molecules are said to be saturated. is means they are stable and will not attempt to react with other potentially bad elements. e problem arises when some hydrogen atoms are not present. e molecule becomes unsaturated and is quite reactive. is can be the beginning of the end for the lubricating oil. Oxygen e bad environment comes from an unlikely source: oxygen. Oxygen is the third most abundant element on earth. It is in the air you breathe and the water you drink as well as countless other substances. Oxygen as an element is actually two atoms which bond together and generally are not a major source of problems. If, however these atoms separate, they go looking for another element to bond with and produce a reaction. is separation of the oxygen element is caused by an increase in energy. e separated oxygen atom encounters an unsaturated hydrocarbon, they bond, and the reaction is devastating. Acids are created which attack the oil, resulting in oxidation. Air is the major source of oxygen needed to make the good oil turn bad. Heat e energy needed to separate the oxygen atoms, and to some extent the hydrocarbons, comes in the form of heat. Heat can originate from a myriad of sources, including the mechanical process, the external Oxidation: Why Good Oil Turns Bad "A bad environment can have devastating eff ects on the quality and life of a lubricant." O il Oxidation Keith Spoonmore | Noria Corporation BACK PAGE BASICS 50 | May - June 2019 | www .

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Machinery Lubrication - Machinery Lubrication May-June 2019