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Eco-friendly Girth Gear Lubricating Greases

Open gear drives are common methods of power transmission for rotating equipment. Modern drives are often the most economical drive alternatives when high load carrying capacity and long service life under severe shock loading conditions are required. These characteristics have made open gearing a popular drive for rugged, rotating equipment such as grinding mills, Kilns driers etc. These equipments are lubricated with girth gear lubricants. In cement plant, generally girth gears are used for crushing raw materials. These equipments operate under different environment and operating conditions. As such a wide variety of lubricants are employed.
Sprayable greases are used for the lubrication of girth gears in cement plants. The consumption of these greases is about 500 – 600 metric tons per annum costing around Rs. 20 – 30 crores. Moreover, they are entirely imported. These lubricants are mineral oil based, which are not biodegradable and, hence, not environment friendly. On account of environmental concern and government regulations, these lubricants are in urgent need of replacement. The practice of using copious types of lubricant is no longer acceptable. End users are demanding more environmentally acceptable lubricants that are economical as well as easy to dispose off. Keeping these requirements in mind, the Indian Institute of Petroleum, Dehradun has developed eco-friendly biodegradable sprayable girth gear lubricants for cement plant. The performance of these products is found to be better than the existing commercial product. The properties of synthesized product are given in the attached table.

Table 1. Physico-chemical/Performance characteristics of developed Products

Sl. No. Parameter/Method Product – 01 Product – 02
1. NLGI Grade (NLGI) 0 0
2. Color Dark Brown Black
3. Consistency at 25°C Worked at 60x (ASTMD-217) 365
4. Copper Corrosion at 100°C for 24 hrs (IP-130) pass Pass
5. Rust Preventive ASTM D-1743 Nil
6. Emcor rust preventive (IP-220) Pass Pass
7. a. Load Wear index, kgf (IP-239)
b. Four ball weld load, kgf (IP-239)
c. Four ball WSD (ASTM D-2266)

8. Timken O.K. Load, lbs (ASTM-2509) 45
9. FZG Scuffing test, (A,8.3/90)
a. Damaged load
b. Wear, wt. loss, mg
10. Biodegrability ASTM D-5864-95 Biodegradable Bio-degradable

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