DNV GL Launches New JDP to Test Biodegradable Lubricants

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By MarEx 2018-01-16 10:20:49

Classification society DNV GL has launched a new joint development project (JDP) in cooperation with marine insurers The Swedish Club, Norwegian Hull Club, Gard and Skuld to test the potential influence of Environmentally Acceptable Lubricants (EALs) on failures in stern tube bearings. DNV GL will oversee detailed laboratory testing of EALs by Leonardo Testing Services Ltd. at the University of Sheffield (UoS), UK.

The JDP has been prompted by an increase in stern tube bearing failures over the last few years. This coincides with the increased uptake of EALs after the introduction of regulations requiring their use in commercial vessels trading in U.S. waters in 2013, but also with the introduction of new propulsion system designs, such as single stern tube bearing installations and larger and heavier propellers operating at lower RPM.

“Very few studies have been conducted to compare the lubrication performance of EALs with that of traditional mineral oils in stern tube applications,’’ says Øystein Åsheim Alnes, Principal engineer at DNV GL. “With this new study we hope to gain a better understanding of factors influencing the lubrication performance of EALs.”

The test programme will investigate such aspects as hydrodynamic oil film formation, oil film thickness under varying loads and temperatures, and potential shear thinning effects at high shear rates. State-of-the-art non-invasive ultrasonic techniques developed by UoS will be utilised to examine lubricant film behaviour in real-time.

“DNV GL supports solutions that can reduce the environmental impact of the maritime industry. Our aim in this study is to undertake a first-hand assessment of the performance of EALs in order to guide the further development of the DNV GL Rules,” says Alnes. The first phase of testing will be completed in the first quarter of 2018, with the results scheduled for publication later in the year.

About DNV GL

DNV GL is a global quality assurance and risk management company. Driven by our purpose of safeguarding life, property and the environment, we enable our customers to advance the safety and sustainability of their business. Operating in more than 100 countries, our professionals are dedicated to helping customers in the maritime, oil & gas, power and renewables and other industries to make the world safer, smarter and greener.

About DNV GL – Maritime

DNV GL is the world’s leading classification society and a recognized advisor for the maritime industry. We enhance safety, quality, energy efficiency and environmental performance of the global shipping industry – across all vessel types and offshore structures. We invest heavily in research and development to find solutions, together with the industry, that address strategic, operational or regulatory challenges. For more information visit www.dnvgl.com/maritime

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