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Real Economy News in Real Time
R/€ = 15.66 Change: -0.05
R/$ = 13.93 Change: -0.09
Au 1437.76 $/oz Change: 17.81
Pt 856.07 $/oz Change: 7.15
 
 
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Hydraulic fluid reduces energy consumption

3rd May 2019 BY: Cameron Mackay
Journalist

Multinational oil and gas corporation ExxonMobil’s Mobil DTE 10 Excel 46 hydraulic lubricant oil has reduced paper and plastics packaging manufacturing company Mpact Plastics’ energy consumption by 7%.

Mpact Plastics – based in Pinetown, in KwaZulu-Natal – intended to reach the group’s national energy consumption goals by reducing consumption in the plant’s 13 blow mould and 22 injection mould machines. It also allows for the extension of oil replacement intervals of the equipment. An energy committee was appointed to implement the energy-saving projects.

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After the group consulted with ExxonMobil’s field engineering service, a case study was chosen through which to reduce energy consumption by switching from a competitor product to Mobil DTE 10 Excel 46. The Mpact Plastics trial run occurred over three months last year and is the first trial conducted on lubrication by Mpact Plastics.

“The decision to switch to this lubrication product was made owing to the product’s stability under extreme conditions, as well as its wide operating temperature range in many applications,” says ExxonMobil South Africa field marketing adviser Andreas Hadjidimitriadis.

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Mpact Plastics’ using Mobil DTE 10 Excel 46 has also helped to optimise equipment performance, which, in turn, reduced unscheduled maintenance and waste oil disposal costs. The hydraulic lubricant oil also reduced operator and machine interaction by 27 h/y, and oil use by 200 ℓ/y.

Hadjidimitriadis notes that the Mobil DTE 10 Excel 46 is a high-performance, anti-wear hydraulic oil designed to fulfil the needs of modern, high-pressure, industrial and mobile equipment hydraulic systems.

The Mobil DTE 10 Excel series is created from particular base oils and an exclusive additive system to provide a balanced performance for different applications.

The series of lubrication oils also shows efficient oxidation, thermal stability, extended oil life and minimal formations of deposits in severe hydraulic systems using high-pressure, high-output pumps.

Hadjidimitriadis emphasises the importance of selecting an appropriate hydraulic fluid to enhance operational performance, reduce costs and increase productivity.

“This is an easy topic to overlook because the cost of hydraulic fluid is typically less than 1% of operating costs. This ignores the fact that the fluid is literally the ‘lifeblood’ of any hydraulic machinery. Choosing a high-performance fluid will not only protect the hydraulic system but it can also help to reduce energy.”

The decision of which fluid to use for certain hydraulic systems, as well as optimising the benefits of chosen fluids, can also be made in conjunction with Mobil’s Serv oil lubricant analysis programme.

ExxonMobil engineers also recommended to Mpact Plastics to apply the analysis programme to improve equipment resilience and enhance the performance of the Mobil DTE 10 series by recognising potential maintenance problems before they happen.

“This allows for operation of the equipment at peak efficiency,” he notes.

Condition-based maintenance practices have gained extensive recognition, as key industry leaders are realising the vital role which oil analysis plays in any equipment monitoring programme, mentions Hadjidimitriadis.

“Advancing productivity, as well as helping manufacturers and processors reach their safety, environmental care and productivity goals through ExxonMobil’s lubricants and services is our highest priority – that’s advancing productivity. It’s how we help manufacturers achieve their broader vision of success.”

Demand for Sustainable Fluids

Environmental and energy management is playing an increased role in the fluid power industry. Hadjidimitriadis states that the benefits of high-performance fluids extend well beyond just supporting smart factories and improving operations.

“People have started to notice the increasing frequency of criticism of the processing industry. As an industry, we need to prove that we are doing the best we can to reduce our environmental impact at the input and output phases,” he says.

High-performance hydraulics fluids will also have a longer operating life if maintained correctly, he points out. “This will, in turn, reduce oil consumption and waste oil disposal.”

He notes that, when the oil reaches the end-of-life phase and must be disposed, high- performance oils can be formulated to have a reduced environmental impact.

Using high-performance hydraulic fluids can result in energy reduction to meet the ISO 50001 and ISO 14001 standards.

ExxonMobil is considering local blending options with its authorised distributor lubricating products distributor Centlube at its CERE blending plant in Boksburg, Gauteng. If blended locally, ExxonMobil would consider exporting the product to other countries in the Southern Africa region.

“Choosing a high-performance product, supported by the right expertise and maintenance programme, can make a huge difference,” he concludes. 

EDITED BY: Zandile Mavuso Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Features
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