LIMA, SEPTEMBER 22 2021 Synthetic lubricants make mining more energy efficient

With the application of synthetic oils we can reduce the energy consumption of our mining equipment to obtain the same production or even increase it, according to the analysis carried out by Kenneth Quenta, Operations supervisor of Mobil Peru, during his presentation on "Eco Smart energy efficiency", at Heading to PERUMIN.

Mobil designed this type of solution in a context in which mining activity has been responsible for the emission of 6,176 gigagrams (Gg) of CO2 (4%) and the transport sector, 17,491 Gg of CO2 (12%), within the subcategory of fuel burning in the energy sector.

"As part of our Eco Smart concept, our synthetic lubricants contribute to energy efficiency by reducing the carbon footprint of the mining operation, increasing the productivity of the equipment and providing greater industrial safety," he said.

He pointed out that energy-efficient synthetic lubricants have various applications in mining. They act directly on the gears through elasto-hydrodynamic lubrication, which initially involves deformation of the mechanical parts due to the interaction of high contact pressures, although they will later return to their original state.

He also indicated that synthetic-based lubricants are used in engines through the hydrodynamic lubrication regime, through which a lubricant film formed by the movement of mechanical parts is created.

"Our range of synthetic lubricants are energy efficient both in terms of performance and in the way they are obtained, since they are made from the polymerization of ethanol to form chains of the same length, size and shape, which means greater benefits for the product", said Kenneth Quenta.

In this way, he indicated that the synthetic lubricant contains chain bases made of paraffinic structures and has a lower coefficient of traction, which, in turn, translates into a lower energy cost to move the oil layers and reduce heat losses due to fluid friction within the lubricants.

Comparison with mineral oils

In another respect, he compared mineral oils with synthetic oils. He pointed out that synthetic oils have a viscosity that allows them to react better to temperature changes and protect their components.

"They also have a better flow at low temperatures, offer greater resistance to oxidation and thermal stability, have low volatility, are compatible with mineral oils, have a longer useful life and a low traction coefficient", he said.

The longer useful life of synthetic oil allows lower labor costs for changing this material, lower oil disposal costs and greater equipment activity. They also provide longer equipment life, less wear and tear and fewer unforeseen shutdowns.

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