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ATIEL Revamps Code of Practice

ATIEL, the technical association of the European lubricants industry, released its latest Code of Practice providing guidelines for lubricant marketers to meet current ACEA motor oil performance standards.

Issue 20 of the code offers guidance on engine lubricant performance limits to be on par with the European Automobile Manufacturers Associations 2016 Engine Oil Sequences, released Dec. 1. This includes an introduction to new engine and lab tests, an overview of the C5 engine oil category and removal of the A1/B1 categories, as well as the dismissal of the grandfathering principal for certain tests.

The association also made structural changes, such as organizing sections to reflect a typical lubricant development program, clearer definitions of roles and responsibilities of parties involved in the development process, new sections to enhance clarity for auditing purposes and a restructuring of supplemental information.

In addition, Issue 20 now aligns with the Additive Technical Committee Code of Practice, including viscosity modifier requirements, and separates the European Engine Lubricant Quality Management System guidelines into a standalone document. The latest issue of the Code of Practice can be downloaded at www.atiel.org.

Blend Plant Opens in Azerbaijan

Lubricant maker Technol opened a 50,000 metric tons per year blending facility in Azerbaijan, calling it the first blend plant in the South Caucasus region.

The U.S. $2.7 million facility is located in the industrial town of Sumqayit, near the capital of Baku. Murad Rafiev, the companys executive director, said that products from the facility will compete with lubricants imported into the country.

Azerbaijan supplies all of its finished lubricants from import, and Technols competitive advantage will be a discount of at least 50 percent in the prices of its finished products, compared to imported, Rafiev noted. We plan to expand the capacity of the plant to 80,000 tons per year.

Technol has plans for future sales expansion into Russia, Iran, Turkey, Georgia and Central Asia, said Rafiev. The company makes approximately 60 products including engine oils, tractor, marine and industrial lubricants, hydraulic fluids, greases and coolants.

Evonik Invests in Nanotechnology Firm

Evonik Industries acquired a minority stake in Nanotech Industrial Solutions, placing a bet that nanotechnology will become an important tool in the production of lubricant additives.

Neither company disclosed the amount of Evoniks investment, nor the size of its share in NIS. Ralf Duessel, head of Evoniks Oil Additives Business, said NISs technology can help Evonik provide additives for more demanding lubricant marketer requirements and development opportunities for existing and future products.

NIS is based in Avenel, New Jersey, and was founded in 2012 to commercialize NanoLube, described by the company as multi-layered spheres and tubes of tungsten disulfide with low toxicity and high shock absorbing properties for making high performing lubricants, coatings and polymer composites.

Brazil Raises Minimum Oil Standard

Brazils National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels raised the minimum performance levels for lubricants sold in the country to meet API SL, API CH-4 or corresponding international standards.

The requirement applies to oils produced locally and to imports. Products with obsolete performance levels made or imported by year-end 2016 can only be distributed until March 31 and sold in Brazil until June 31. After July 1, companies selling products that do not meet the required standards are subject to penalties and sanctions.

These minimum performance levels indicate the [lubricant industrys] capacity to respond to the evolution of equipment, operational conditions, quality and types of fuels, and more recently, environmental regulations, the agency stated in a press release.

The regulatory body added that taking substandard products off the market in Brazil reduces inadequate engine lubrication caused by the consumer choosing the wrong lubricant, and that higher quality engine oils allow longer drain intervals, which leads to lower consumption.

LSC Acquires Infineums Vistone Brand

Lubricating Specialties Co. acquired the Vistone product line and associated business from Infineum USA LP. The transaction included Vistones compressor fluid brand, a detergent additive for aviation lubricants, and a viscosity modifier used in a variety of industrial lubricant and grease formulations. The price of the transaction was not disclosed.

According to LSCs website, the company has previously offered a synthetic air compressor oil to extend service life in rotary screw compressors and greatly reduce deposits in both single- and multi-stage reciprocating air compressors. LSC, which is the largest independent lubricant blender in the Western United States, believes this acquisition will expand its product range.

Chinas Amer Plans New Facility

Chinese metalworking fluids maker Dongguan Amer Lubricant Technology Co. will invest over 300 million yuan (U.S. $43.3 million) to build a new blending plant in the port of Humen, in Dongguan, Guangdong province.

The facility will have capacity to produce approximately 200,000 metric tons per year of industrial lubes including chain oils, cutting oils and anti-rust oils, and storage capacity of over 50,000 tons. Construction of the plant is expected to be complete in the first half of 2018.

Amer president Wang Xiaolong said that the Humen facility will mainly supply the Southern China market, and that the companys current plant in the Song Shan Lake technology park will be turned into a research center.

Briefly Noted

Chemtura Corp.s shareholders approved its merger with Lanxess AG, which will acquire all the outstanding shares from the Philadelphia-based specialty chemicals manufacturer. The deal is expected to close in mid-2017.

Korean oil giant S-Oil signed a contract to supply Japanese base oil supplier Idemitsu Kosanalmost 576 billion won (U.S. $484 million) of base oils through 2021.

Castrol signed a three-year deal to provide Indias Tata Motors with commercial vehicle motor oils in over 50 markets including countries throughout Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent.

American additives supplier Afton Chemical Corp. inaugurated its expanded technology center in Suzhou, China, which includes newly installed finished lubricant blending capacity for testing formulations.

PetroChoice acquired Indianapolis-based Miller Industrial Fluids LLC, which distributes and blends metalworking products, specialty lubricants and rust preventatives.

RelaDyne acquired Sensmeier Oil Co. in Mansfield, Ohio, expanding its current operations in Toledo and Cleveland.

Faces in the News

Katharine Morgan is now president of ASTM International, after serving as executive vice president and v.p. of technical committee operations over 33 years. She succeeds James A. Thomas, who served 25 years in the role.

HollyFrontier announced changes to its management team related to its acquisition of Suncor Energys Petro-Canada Lubricants. Mark Plake resigned as president of subsidiary Holly Logistics Services to preside over Petro-Canada Lubricants. President and CEO of HollyFrontier George Damiris took Plakes role. Richard Voliva III was promoted to executive vice president and CFO of HollyFrontier. He replaces Douglas Aron, who will pursue work outside the company but provide consulting and transition services through the end of the year.

Chevron named Michael Wirth vice chairman of the board of directors. Wirth serves as executive vice president of midstream and development at the company and will also oversee policy, government and public affairs.

Michael Smith was named executive vice president and president of performance chemicals, strategy and development at Ingevity. Smiths new responsibilities combine with those of Edward Rose, who served as executive v.p. and president of performance chemicals before leaving the company in January.

Nynas announced that sales executive Lina Zuluaga and sales manager for Latin America Marcela Tocelis will lead its new office in Bogota, Colombia.

Palmer Holland appointed former Wallover Oil president Eric Kielts business manager for lubricants and metalworking fluids. Kielts spent 27 years at Strongsville, Ohio-based Wallover before Houghton International purchased the company in July.

Warren Distribution promoted Curt Knapp to chief operating officer of sales and supply, and Donna Weeda to COO of operations.

Indian Oil Corp. named S.S.V. Ravakumar director of research and development. He previously served as executive director of refining technology at the companys R&D center in Faridabad, in the Indian state of Haryana.

At Starfire Premium Products, Darrin Ward was named COO. Leigh Smith was hired as vice president of sales for the companys Eastern United States distribution network, while Jeremy Chase joined as v.p. of sales for the Western U.S. Tim Wullenweber was promoted to v.p. of marketing and technical services.

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