Efficient Plant April 2020 - 18

feature | lubrication strategies

U.S. Industrial Energy
Consumption by Industry, 2018
Cement and glass 2%

Other 8%
Bulk chemical 27%

Metal-based products 4%
Agriculture 5%
Food processing 5%
Iron, steel, and
aluminum 6%

Construction 7%

Refining 18%

Paper 6%

Mining 12%

Note: Includes electricity purchases and energy sources used as feedstocks for
making products. Other includes wood products (2%), plastics products (1%),
and all others (6%).
Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Annual Energy Outlook
2019, Tables 25 to 35, Jan. 2019.

Approximately 23% of
energy is consumed in
response to "tribological contacts," of
which 20% is used to
overcome friction, i.e.,
lubrication influences
as much as 20% of our
total energy usage.

the right base-oil viscosity is just as important as oilbased lubricants, choosing the correct NLGI consistency grade is also a key driver of energy usage. For
example, using a multipurpose grease with a base-oil
viscosity in the 220- to 320-cSt range incorrectly used
to lubricate an electric motor can result in a 4% to 6%
increase in force (and hence energy) that the motor
needs to overcome, compared with the more normal
viscosity of an electric motor grease of 90 to 120 cSt.

LUBRICATION SUSTAINABILITY
While reducing energy or fuel consumption is an
important aspect of any lubrication sustainability
policy, so too is reducing the amount of oil or grease
that is used. Using less oil or grease means less oil
production, fewer carbon emissions, and less waste
that requires disposal.
Many organizations are moving their assetmanagement policies toward the ISO 55000 standard

18

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| EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

first released in 2014, with sustainability as a firm
pillar of the standard. In the world of lubrication,
ICML (International Council for Machinery Lubrication, Broken Arrow, OK, icmlonline.com) recently
launched its own standard-ICML 55-which aligns
with ISO 55000 and provides a prescriptive series of
recommendations for precision lubrication and lubrication sustainability.
One of the fundamental tenets of ISO 55000
and ICML 55 is the definition of an asset beyond a
machine to anything that has tangible value to the
organization. By that definition, a lubricant should
be considered an asset since the effectiveness of the
lubricant can have such a profound impact on equipment life and energy usage. Gone are the days when
oil was considered to be a consumable, purchased
at the lowest price and changed out on a whim. The
health, wellbeing, and cleanliness of the lubricant
should be nurtured to extract maximum value from
this important asset.
The first step to nurturing your oil is to keep the
oil inside the machine by minimizing leakage. Even
a leakage rate of a drop per minute can amount to
5-to-10 gallons of oil loss over the course of a year.
Multiply that by tens or even hundreds of machines
and it becomes clear that oil loss due to leakage can be
a major source of a company's maintenance costs and
increased environmental footprint.
In some instances, regulatory bodies such as MSHA
(Mining Safety and Health Administration, Arlington,
VA, msha.gov) and the ISO 14000 family of environmental standards require that oil usage and losses be
tracked. While not all companies or industries are
required to track oil purchases and disposal rates, it's
likely that tracking oil usage throughout a plant will
become increasingly prevalent with the rollout of
stricter environmental policies.
The process of over greasing is also prevalent across
all industries. Not only does over greasing induce
bearing failure-particularly in high-speed applications-it also results in excess energy consumption
as the motor tries to overcome churning and internal
friction.
Over greasing, by inference, means that a plant
will be buying far more grease than needed to keep
equipment running.

APRIL 2020

3/26/20 3:35 PM


http://www.icmlonline.com http://www.msha.gov http://www.EFFICIENTPLANTMAG.COM

Efficient Plant April 2020

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