Cost Effective Method to Analyse Lubrication Oil
The lubricating oil analysis is the most common method to identify the condition of any machinery. There are various ways to analyse lubricating oil based on an individual examination of lubricant properties such as Viscosity, Total Base Number (TBN), Total Acidic Number (TAN), Water Content, Impurities (element analysis) etc. However, the equipment required to conduct these analyses are costly, need specific environmental conditions, and generally time consuming. The time consumption of this whole process hampers the maintenance program efficiency. Hence, an onsite, cost-effective, and faster results-giving method to analyse lubricating oil would be a valuable asset. A comprehensive literature survey was carried out to understand the current trends in lubricating oil analysis. Accordingly, the analysis techniques could be categorized as Physical, Chemical, Electro-magnetic, and Optical. The proposed design is based on an optical technique that deals with the Refractive Index (RI) since it is an indicator of the physical as well as the chemical property characteristic of a substance. The critical angle of a material is directly related to RI. Monitoring the critical angle changes leads to an understanding of the quality of the lube-oil. The performance of a proposed lube-oil analyser was assessed using Shell Gardenia 40 (lubricating oil used in high-speed marine engines of Fast Attack Craft) lubricant at different operating hours. The results obtained from the proposed device were compared with the tests carried out according to the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards and through a viscometer. Both tests confirm the effectiveness of the proposed device.
- Engineering