Process Economics Program Report 157A
Lubricating Oil Additives
Published: January 1997
Lubricating oil additives (LOAs) impart desirable properties to basestocks to satisfy lubricant standards for high-performance engines. Each additive is selected for its ability to perform one or more specific functions: to restrict oxidation, to modify the viscosity-temperature characteristics, to act as detergents, to depress the pour point, or to inhibit rust. Although LOAs are used in petroleum-based lubricants, they themselves are not typical petroleum products; they are considered specialty chemicals. Five producers--Lubrizol, Exxon's Paramins, Ethyl, Chevron's Oronite, and Shell--account for more than 80% of the $6 billion/yr LOA market.
This report contains process designs and economic evaluations for the three types of additives with the largest sales volumes: a polyalkenyl succinimide dispersant, a multifunctional ethylene-propylene copolymer that functions as both a viscosity-index improver and a dispersant, and a calcium alkylsulfonate detergent.