Elucidation of the Corrosion Mechanism of Vegetable-Oil-Based Lubricants

[+] Author and Article Information
N. H. Jayadas

Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering,  CUSAT, Cochin-682 022, Kerala, Indiajayadasnh@cusat.ac.in

K. Prabhakaran Nair

Department of Mechanical Engineering,  NITC, Calicut-673 601, Kerala, Indiakpn@nitc.ac.in

J. Tribol 129(2), 419-423 (Aug 04, 2006) (5 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2464133 History: Received February 18, 2006; Revised August 04, 2006

In this paper, the corrosion properties of vegetable oils as base oil for industrial lubricants are evaluated by the copper strip corrosion test (ASTM D130) and rust prevention test (ASTM D665). An analysis of possible organic reaction mechanisms leading to corrosion of metals in the absence and presence of oxygen and moisture is presented, when vegetable oils are used as base oils. Corrosion properties of vegetable oil fatty acids, evolved as degradation products, are analyzed using quantum chemical calculations. The popular quantum chemical software SPARTAN 04 (Wavefunction Inc. USA) was used for the studies employing the semi-empirical PM3 method. The calculations were performed in line with similar reported studies used to analyze the corrosion inhibition properties of many nitrogen and sulfur-containing anti-corrosion additives. The corrosion inhibition properties of ZDDP (zinc dialkyldithiophosphate) were compared to other additives using PM3 semi-empirical calculations. Moisture content in vegetable oils is found to be the leading cause of corrosion in vegetable-oil-based lubricants. Control of moisture content and use of additives like ZDDP can be effective in controlling corrosion.

Copyright © 2007 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Formation of free fatty acid by pyrolysis of vegetable oil

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Figure 2

Formation of free fatty acids by free radical mechanism in the presence of oxygen

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Figure 3

Hydrolysis of triglyceride esters

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Figure 4

SPARTAN 04 models of the molecules used for the study

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Figure 5

HOMO maps of molecules

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Figure 6

HOMO maps of lauric acid and ZDDP

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Figure 7

LUMO maps of lauric acid and ZDDP

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Figure 8

Electrostatic potential maps of lauric acid and ZDDP



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