Shortage and cost of fuels has stimulated fuel efficient automotive engine and transmission lubricant development. Lower viscosity base oils and friction reducing additives have successfully been used to formulate such oils. Synthetic hydrocarbons, esters and hydrotreated mineral base stocks of high Viscosity Index and low volatility yield high performance lubricants meeting increased demands on product stability under more severe and long drain operating conditions. Special lubricants have been developed for use with oxygenated fuels in spark ignition and diesel engines.

Whilst severe hydrotreatment is costly and hence restricted it reduces the refiner's dependence on special crude oil types. Modifications to solvent extraction and catalytic dewaxing processes have been studied to reduce energy requirements in processing.

Industrial lubricant developments show trends towards increased usage of: high-water based hydraulic fluids, ester and polyalphaolefins-based compressor oils, polymer quenchants, synthetic coolants for metal cutting and aluminium and lithium complex greases.

Reduction of marine engine operating costs involving use of lower quality fuels and increased part-load running of main engines has led to problems being combatted by the use of lubricants having higher effective alkalinity/detergency/dispersancy and ‘low ash’ lubricants.

New laboratory test methods have been developed to update correlation with field performance of lubricants.


La pénurie et les augmentations des coûts des carburants ont encouragé la mise au point de lubrifiants pour moteurs et engrenages automobiles assurant un meilleur rendement. A cet effet, on a fait intervenir avec succès des huiles de base à plus faible viscosité, ainsi que des additifs diminuant le frottement dans la composition de tels produits. Les hydrocarbures synthétiques, esters et huiles minérales de base produits par hydrotraitement et présentant un haut indice de viscosité et une faible volatilité ont permis d'obtenir des lubrif

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