Process Economics Program Report 157
Lubricating Oil Additives 157
Published: May 1983
Lubricating oil additives impart new properties to an oil or reinforce desirable properties already possessed by the oil. Without additives, petroleum oils would not be satisfactory lubricants for high-performance gasoline or diesel engines. They are used to prevent sludge and varnish deposits in engines, to inhibit rust and corrosion, and to minimize wear and friction. The trend toward increased power from lighter and smaller engines has required increased concentrations of additives in lubricating oils.
Most oil additives are complex organic chemicals or mixtures eval uated by their performance rather than their composition or purity. They are the basis for a multimilllon dollar industry conducted by some of the major oil companies and by a few independent companies.
This report contains process designs, economic evaluations, patent summaries, and a brief discussion of process chemistry for the following additives: a polyalkenyl succinimide dispersant; a zinc dialkyl-dithiophosphate multifunctional antioxidant, corrosion inhibitor, and extreme-pressure additive; a magnesium alkylsulfonate detergent; an ethylene-propylene copolymer multifunctional viscosity index improver-dispersant; and a calcium alkylphenate detergent.