ExxonMobil shares its perspective on how improvement in efficiency of machinery and equipment can help mitigate the effects of the rising energy demand in the industrial sector
ExxonMobil Lubricants Pvt Ltd, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation, has shared a perspective on effective lubrication practices and the need for guidelines on industrial lubrication in India. Every year ExxonMobil produces an 'Outlook for Energy' report - ‘The Outlook for Energy: A View to 2040’, which provides a window to the future of the world's energy needs. One of the key findings of this report is the essential role that energy efficiency will play in the future to help solve energy challenges, with the global demand for energy expected to increase by more than 35 per cent by 2040.
Companies in the industrial sector are increasingly looking at new technologies to reduce their energy usage. One opportunity for energy conservation that is often overlooked in industrial facilities is the technology behind the lubricant used. Lubricants are often considered as a negligible contributor towards the annual profitability of the plant. This is because of lack of appropriate awareness and quantification methods that capture benefits associated with the proper usage of a lubricant. ExxonMobil defines total cost of ownership (TCO) as an effective way to consolidate key benefits. The concept attempts to cover the complete set of cost components from ‘Purchase to Disposal’. TCO comprises capital expenses incurred in acquiring and installing the equipment as well as operating expenses, including operating cost, maintenance and repair, downtime cost, energy cost, environment cost, routine and overtime labour, training and disposal cost, etc. High performance lubricants with significant energy efficiency benefits have the ability to achieve potential savings in energy, operation, and maintenance costs in Indian industry.
According to Dan Kellen, Global Industrial Product Technology Manager, ExxonMobil Fuels, Lubricants, and Specialities Marketing Company, “The science of tribology is growing and will become increasingly important in the future because of the constantly increasing demands of improved efficiency from the industry. The lubricants of the future have to be more environmentally adapted with a higher level of performance and lower total life cycle cost (LCC) than commonly used lubricants today. Looking to the future, the trend is towards lubricants and base oils with even higher purity, lower volatility, and longer life.”
ExxonMobil continuously analyses trends that will impact the industrial landscape and also evaluates lubricant technologies and services that will be needed in the future. Our relationship with equipment builders has given us the kind of inputs required, specifically for investing in R&D to introduce new products with new technologies. In turn, we have made sure that our mutual customers, i.e., our customers and our equipment builder customers, are benefited from this.
Glen Sharkowicz, Asia Pacific Industrial Lubricants Marketing Manager, ExxonMobil Fuels & Lubricants, said, “Using energy efficient lubricants will enable manufacturing facilities to operate at maximum efficiency at optimal cost. Whether for gearboxes, engines, or hydraulic systems, energy efficient lubricants are available, and with up to 6 per cent efficiency improvement having been proven in some applications, they can be a very smart investment. Improving energy efficiency by utilising energy efficient lubricants has helped ExxonMobil customers reduce carbon footprint, increase productivity, and reduce overall operating costs.”
Along with high performance lubricants, implementation of sound lubrication practices, including preventative maintenance and monitoring programs, are key to help extract peak performance and maximum value. Effective lubrication practices play a valuable role in improving equipment performance, and therefore overall equipment effectiveness. To minimise the risk of unplanned events and to help improve equipment performance, it is important to develop and implement a robust, solution-oriented lubrication program for operations, which utilises a combination of high quality products and appropriate technical services to better protect and monitor any industrial equipment.
According to Shankar Karnik, General Manager Industrial, ExxonMobil Lubricants Pvt Ltd., “Validated data of real-time case studies establishes that energy-efficient lubricants can help in achieving productivity improvement in various industries. Thus, we feel that there is a need in the industry for guidelines to support energy audit. This will be a step forward in the right direction for the lubricant industry in India.”