Development of novel sustainable neat-oil metal working fluids for stainless steel and titanium alloy machining. Part 1. Formulation development

Authors: Abdalla, H.; Baines, W.; McIntyre, G.; Slade, C.

Source: The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology, Volume 34, Numbers 1-2, August 2007 , pp. 21-33(13)

Publisher: Springer

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This paper introduces and describes the development and application of methodologies for the formulation of novel sustainable neat-oil metal removal fluids. A further paper will describe the methodologies being employed and the results of the performance benchmarking of the final fluid formulations for stainless steel and aerospace-grade titanium alloy materials. In this paper, a stepwise approach to the development of novel sustainable neat-oil metal removal formulations is described with a detailed discussion and analysis of the approach taken and the methodologies developed and applied. Two target applications were identified for cutting stainless steel and aerospace-grade titanium alloys. The key required properties of the fluids for these applications were combined with targets identified for cost, low temperature properties, kinetic viscosity (KV) and oxidative stability. Samples of base oils were obtained and characterised. The oils ranged from commodity commercial and specialist natural vegetable oils to chemically modified vegetable-oil-derived fatty acid esters and polyols. The selected oils were used to create blends which were screened for their key properties. From this work, four blends of base oils were identified for being taken forwards to the formulation screening stage. These blends represented a range of natural and modified oils blended in such a way as to achieve all of the required key properties of cost, KV, melt/pour points and oxidative stability. To determine if the oils were likely to also perform well as metal cutting fluids, they were subjected to a range of tests with and without the addition of certain additives, and their performances were benchmarked against a range of mineral oil and polyol-ester-based commercial fluids currently supplied to the target applications areas. The tests employed were: SRV, microtap and oxidation stability. The issues involved in the extrapolation of results from tribological testing to the prediction of fluid cutting performance are highlighted and discussed. From this work, one base oil blend for each of the two target applications was identified and the best performing mineral and polyol ester benchmark fluids were selected. Full-scale drilling and rigid torque tapping tests were used to refine formulations and to screen other additives identified in parallel microtap tests. The durability, oxidation stability, machine tool compatibility and misting potentials of the final formulations were also benchmarked using a range of standard and novel methodologies—this work will be described in a later paper.

Keywords: Cutting fluid; Durability; Formulation; Machinability; Oxidation stability; Sustainability

Document Type: Research Article


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Publication date: August 1, 2007

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