Over the past decades, the rising concern and awareness towards the usage of products derived from petroleum and their harmful environmental impact have generated a huge opportunity to produce environment friendly lubricants. The benefits of environmentally suitable products include negligible health and safety risks along with less amount of pollution. The environmental effect of lubricants is observed at all stages of usage, production, and disposal. However, it should be harmless to humans through inhalation and contact during both the use and production. Ecological disaster can be caused by accidental losses that occur during spill to environmentally sensitive areas such as waterways, forestry, construction, agriculture, harbors, and mining. Therefore, owing to these reasons and in return to public awareness, there are desirable rules that designate the usage of environment friendly lubricating fluids. Therefore, it has created huge opportunity to produce environmentally acceptable lubricants that are obtained from natural esters such as vegetable oils.
Owing to their low toxicity, high biodegradability, and environment friendly nature, there is large interest in bio based lubricants obtained from renewable resources such as vegetable oils. Various pathways are being created into various lubrication productions such as fuels, hydraulic fluids, petroleum fuel additives, engine oils, and metalworking fluids owing to the natural abundance and high lubricity of vegetable oils, especially monoesters. Also, there is an increasing demand for vegetable oils every year. For instance, in 1980, the annual production of vegetable oil across the world was 55 million metric tons (MMT) and it rose to 100 MMT by 2000. It has been projected that by 2020 it will be around 200 MMT.
A large part of bio based lubricant market mainly comprises from vegetable oil and oilseeds. Also, majority of the bio lubricants are made from esters. Firstly, there are natural esters which are triglycerides of vegetable oils. Also, oleo chemical esters of fatty acids like di-esters, polyol esters, and complex esters are present. A number of these kind of lubricating materials are obtained from numerous cultures, typically either sunflower or rapeseed. However, they can also be produced from exotic oils. Depending upon the usage, fatty acids can also be obtained from palm and coconut oil. These oils possess different properties as compared to those that are more commonly used, specifically in terms of oxidation stability. Therefore, owing to these reasons and in return to public awareness, there are desirable rules that designate the usage of environment friendly lubricating fluids. Therefore, it has created huge opportunity to produce environmentally acceptable lubricants that are obtained from natural esters such as vegetable oils.
Bio based lubricants are mostly for the lubrication of chain saws. While it is being used, the oil has to deal with the centrifugal force and is spread over the entire floor. In order to optimize the equipment operation like harvesters, tractors, load carriers or cranes, these types of lubricants play the role of hydraulic fluids. In order to lubricate components that cannot be constantly covered with oil, they are also used in greases. Bio based lubricants are also utilized for lubricating engines. In fact, the motor oils produced from plant based oils have been developed to deal with high thermal stresses.
The major factors boosting the growth of bio based lubricants market include legislations supporting the use of bio-lubricants and the growth in end user industries such as transportation. But, price volatility in mineral oil prices and high amount of production cost can impede the growth of this market. Huge opportunities are present for bio based lubricant manufacturers owing to the accelerated industrialization taking place in emerging countries. The major players in the bio based lubricants market include Soyatech Inc, United Bio Lube, Renewable Lubricants Inc, and Revolution Bio-based Lubricants LLC among others.