Understanding Lubricants And Lubricant Parameters For Marine Diesel Engines

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Understanding Lubricants And Lubricant Parameters For Marine Diesel Engines

Lubricants play a key role in the main engine lubrication system. The system consists of complex machinery to pressurize the oil and cool it before being distributed across the moving parts of the diesel engine.

Lubrication helps minimize friction and ensures that you get the best performance from your marine diesel engine. Marine diesel engine lubricants can be derived from vegetables, minerals and even animals. They also help dissipate heat and minimize the effects of wear on the engine.

Today, most marine engines utilize two different types of lubricant oils:

  • Synthetic oils that are manufactured using esters or polyglycols
  • Mineral oils that are byproducts of crude oil processing

Understanding The Properties Of Oil

Before discussing the role of lubrication in detail, it is a good idea to understand the properties of oil, which include:

  • Volatility-this helps determine the flashpoint or the temperature at which the oil ignites. The flashpoint for marine diesel engine oils should be 200 degree Celsius.
  • Alkalinity– the alkalinity of the oil acts as a deterrent to the growing acidity caused by sulfur residues from diesel combustion.
  • Viscosity– this is what determines the oil’s ability to flow at specific temperatures and pressures. You should calculate the viscosity by considering the operational temperature range and the application of the lubricant.
  • Oiliness– The oiliness is the lubricant’s ability to adhere to smooth surfaces like metal bearings.
  • Detergents– these are added to lubricants in small quantities to eliminate formation of deposits and keep the oil clean.

Maintaining the lubricant parameters involves controlling the pressure and temperature, which is typically done by the watch-keeping engineer. Water and solids also need to be removed from the oil through a method called centrifuging which must be carried out frequently.

 

Checking Temperature And Pressures

When it comes to maintaining appropriate lubrication, the most important part is keeping the oil viscous and in the right condition. The watch-keeping engineer should constantly inspect the temperature, pressure and overall condition of the oil.

As marine diesel engines produce acidic residues, which can often escape between piston rings and get carried away by the oil, they can make their way to the sumps. This could contaminate the oil leading to frequent changing. Most modern marine diesel engines have an inline centrifuge system that filters out contaminants and moisture to maintain the integrity of oil. Make sure it is working at maximum efficiency to avoid potential engine repairs.

Check out the collection of marine spare parts available at Cahngrun Trade to maintain your engine with the most reliable and high quality parts.

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