New Heavy-Duty Diesel Lube Spec Due in 2016 Targets Oxidation Stability, Aeration Protection, Shear Resistance, Compatibility With Biodiesel Blends and More.
By Russell Carter
When it comes to diesel technology, nothings stands still for long. Engine manufacturers have been busy for most of the past decade, for example, planning, designing and testing new engine platforms and systems capable of meeting ever-tighter regulatory standards for lower emissions as well as customer demands for higher reliability, economy and power.
The pace has been a bit slower lately for diesel engine lubrication oils, however. The current top-level performance category for heavy-duty diesel engine oils, known as CJ-4, went commercial more than five years ago. Over that period, diesel technology has continued to evolve, driven by design improvements that include increases in engine power density, combustion pressures, fuel injection pressures, oil temperatures, and expanded use of wear-resistant materials in engine components, to name just a few.
The last seven heavy-duty oil categories to be developed – API CE, CF-4, CH-4, CL-4, CL-4 Plus and CJ-4 – were developed about three years apart starting in the late 1980s, a pace that serves to highlight the lag between introduction of CJ-4 and the likelihood that when a new heavy-duty oil category is finally brought to commercial status in the future, CJ-4 will probably have been in effect for at least a decade.
Citing concerns about the changes in engine technology, the age of the current category – certain engine tests for CJ-4 oils are becoming obsolete, for example – and the ability of CJ-4 oils to protect late-model engines, the Engine Manufacturers Association in June 2011 sent a formal request to the American Petroleum Institute (API) for development of a new performance category for HD oils, and API subsequently gave the green light to the project, which calls for the new category (PC-11) to be ready for commercial release in January 2016.
In February, Shell Lubricants invited a group of trade-press editors to a briefing held in Park City, Utah, to explain some of the major issues related to development of the new HD oil category. The principal objectives of PC-11, according to Shell experts, are to provide higher oil performance in several areas, including:
- Oxidation stability.
- Aeration protection .
- Shear resistance.
- Compatibility with biodiesel blends.
- Scuffing and adhesive-wear prevention.
However, any new oil category also must be capable of meeting other demands, such as better overall fuel economy and decreased greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – both of which generally require lower-viscosity oils. And, PC-11 oils also must be backward-compatible with CJ-4 performance standards, which were designed to apply to engines meeting emissions-compliance standards in effect from 2007.
Shell believes that it’s entirely possible for lower-viscosity oils to provide adequate engine protection. It cites tests of its Rotella T5 10W-30 oil versus CJ-4 15W-40 oils that have shown equal or better engine wear protection results from the lighter oil over the heavier product.
“Thin [lower viscosity] oil is the oil of the future,” said Dan Arcy, global OEM technical manager for Shell.
Even so, oil suppliers and engine builders are concerned that a single PC-11 product may not have the ability to provide satisfactory protection over the wide range of engine applications it will encounter.
Thus it’s likely, explained Arcy, that the new category will be split into two subcategories: one that preserves historical heavy-duty oil criteria and one that provides fuel efficiency benefits while maintaining durability. This will require engine-oil suppliers to develop two separate product lines to meet category performance specifications.
At this time, noted Arcy, the actual performance targets are still not entirely clear and defined, and that it will be a “definite challenge” to have these targets defined and validated in time to meet the PC-11 release timetable.
Work on defining the new category began in December 2011, conducted by a development team comprising three representatives each from API, EMA and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) and the American Chemistry Council (ACC).
Shell also used the press briefing to call attention to its Rotella heavy-duty diesel engine lubrication limited warranty program, which was announced in mid-2011 and is free with the purchase and installation of Rotella T6 full synthetic, Rotella T5 synthetic blend or Rotella Triple Protection heavy-duty engine oils.
The warranty covers certain HD diesel engine parts for up to 10 years or 500,000 miles.
The warranty covers Class 2c–Class 8 trucks with heavy-duty diesel engines used in on-road applications with a gross vehicular weight of 80,000 lb. or less. Other conditions apply, and further details can be obtained by visiting www.rotella.com.
Also in mid-2011, Shell rolled out a redesigned portfolio of transmission fluids, gearbox oils, mobile hydraulic oils, gear and axle oils, and greases for on- and off-highway vehicles and equipment.
The simplified product lineup, according to the company, is designed to make selecting the proper level of protection easier.
Shell Donax and Shell Dentax products were consolidated under the Shell Spirax brand of gear oils, axle oils and transmission fluids. All grease products are now under the Shell Gadus brand. Shell Retinax, Shell Rhodina, Shell Albidaand Shell Alvania are among the products now in the Shell Gadus portfolio.
The redesigned portfolio, which is in effect globally, features new packaging labels and product guides to aid choice, using new names, color coding and visual icons to indicate individual performance benefits. E
Russell Carter is managing editor of Rock Products’ sister publication Engineering & Mining Journal.
ConocoPhillips ‘Liquid Titanium’ Technology Reduces Bearing Corrosion, Enhances Engine Wear Protection
ConocoPhillips Co. offers Kendall Super-D XA with Liquid Titanium, a premium tier API CJ-4 diesel engine oil formulated with an exclusive liquid-titanium technology that provides reduced bearing corrosion, enhanced engine wear protection, and has increased oxidation stability.
Kendall Super-D XA with Liquid Titanium is an enhancement to ConocoPhillips Co.’s API CJ-4 synthetic blend engine oil made from an advanced, low SAPS (sulfated ash, phosphorous and sulfur) technology, and is approved under the latest heavy duty engine oil specifications from major engine builders.
“Kendall Super-D XA with Liquid Titanium is the first and only multi-grade, heavy duty engine oil of its kind, which raises the bar for novel diesel engine oil technology,” said Reginald Dias, director, Commercial Products, ConocoPhillips Co. “Kendall Super-D XA with Liquid Titanium is engineered from advanced high-performance additives and a blend of synthetic and high-quality Group II base stocks. We chose to add liquid titanium because it is a powerful additive that strongly bonds to metal surfaces at the molecular level, adding an extra layer of protection to further reduce wear on critical parts and help extend engine life. It also increases the oxidation stability of the oil, helping to prolong oil life during service. These product enhancements provide added value to fleet owners and operators by helping to improve engine performance, reduce maintenance, extend drain intervals, and protect the investment.”
In addition to previously documented performance benefits, where the ConocoPhillips premium API CJ-4 engine oil was already proven to outperform leading competitive products in several key performance features, Kendall Super-D XA with Liquid Titanium features extra engine-protection characteristics including reduced wear of critical parts in the severe Cummins ISB test and reduced wear, less deposits and increased oil-oxidation stability in other industry standard engine tests and bench tests.
Citgo Lubricants Greenway Program Paves Way to 2018
The trucking industry faces unprecedented challenges in a continuing effort to reduce the carbon footprint of the heavy-duty transportation industry, which is why companies like Citgo Lubricants are helping fleets prepare for these strict regulations.
Citgo Lubricants has developed GreenWay, an initiative that takes on environmental stewardship issues and connects it with measureable economic savings and increased efficiency.
“To reach the goal of 15 percent reduction in fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for model year 2018, heavy-duty trucks must embrace offerings like GreenWay as well as other industry initiatives,” said Mark Betner product manager, Citgo Lubricants. “We are proud to offer cleaner and more efficient products and programs that will meet the government standards while also increasing savings on the trucking industries bottom line.”
Government mandates from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Transportation to improve fuel efficiency and reduce greenhouse gases have spurred innovation and technological advancement, including the important change from conventional to synthetic lubricants.
GreenWay delivers elite fully synthetic products that are backed with the company’s state-of-the-art LubeAlert Oil Analysis Program.
Through the initiative, Citgo Lubricants works one-on-one with fleets to build customized solutions. These solutions focus on extending drain service intervals, lengthening component life and reducing fuel costs that can add up to more than $4,000 savings annually per unit.
Other elements in this equation include advanced technologies that are leading to breakthroughs in trucking such as aerodynamic design and materials as well as hybrid capabilities.
The GreenWay family of synthetic products includes:
- Citgo CITGARD SynDurance Synthetic Engine Oil SAE 5W-40.
- Citgo SynDurance Synthetic Gear Oil SAE 75W-90.
- Citgo SynDurance Synthetic Gear Oil SAE 50.
- Citgo SynDurance Premium Synthetic 460 Grease #00.
- Citgo SynDurance Premium Synthetic 460 Grease #02.