General Manager, Industrial Lubricants,
ExxonMobil Lubricants Private Limited
Shankar Karnik, General Manager, Industrial Lubricants, ExxonMobil Lubricants Private Limited, reveals how the right lubricant can improve productivity and increase profits for a manufacturing business
The machine shop industry is core to the manufacturing sector. The Indian manufacturing sector is turning a curve – we are witnessing a focused and continuous effort on part of manufacturers to not just increase productivity and cut costs, but also adopt sustainable processes and technologies for a greener business. As newer technologies in the machine shops gain momentum, the lubricant industry is also gearing up to meet the need for customised specialty products. Industry leaders like ExxonMobil are powering this transformation, bringing technologically superior world-class lubricants developed through global expertise of decades that deliver significantly improved productivity and cost savings.
For the manufacturing sector, a key operational challenge is to strike an optimum balance between throughput and maintenance. A direct fallout of this imbalance can be a breakdown of operations, which can severely derail deadlines and hamper production. Sometimes manufacturers are tempted to postpone or delay preventive maintenance or they replace original components with lower-quality items. This practice may create unsafe conditions in harsh manufacturing environments if these low quality components – including lubricants – can’t stand the up to operating conditions. Poor maintenance can also cause health and safety issues, as well as lead to unplanned or excessive downtime. Manufacturers need to perform preventive maintenance on recommended schedules to keep operating costs low and throughput high, while ensuring worker safety.
Technologically-advanced lubrication practice is one of the key factors for preventive maintenance. Lubricant is the lifeblood of machines and oil analysis is akin to a doctor testing a blood sample to assess one’s health and detect ailments that require treatment. A sample of oil provides crucial information that can help increase productivity, reduce unscheduled downtime, improve equipment durability and lessen lubricant consumption. Mobil ServSM Lubricant Analysis, bringing its thorough knowledge of applications and equipment built by working closely with original equipment manufacturers, delivers precise analysis and detailed, actionable recommendations, resulting in cost savings, strong productivity and peace of mind.
We also bring expertise through our Mobil ServSM Engineering Services to help plants optimize their lubrication programs, troubleshoot equipment issues and proactively inspect and monitor equipment for more efficient and profitable operations.
Incorrect lubricant usage – even over usage of lubricants – can severely hamper productivity. For instance, disregarding the manufacturer’s recommendations for any piece of equipment or component could potentially lead to failure of the equipment or affect the machine’s warranty. With usage of lubricant closely linked to varying factors like environmental conditions, speed, load and temperature, getting the usage right is imperative for manufacturers. Using the appropriate grade and type of lubricant is essential for proper bearing performance. Failure to choose the right lubricant can lead to shortened bearing life.
After many decades of serving the industry, we have the proven lubricants and expertise to help manufacturers at every stage of the manufacturing process. Our lubricants are designed to work together and minimize the impact of cross-contamination. For instance, our recent launch, the Mobil SHC™ Elite, is a breakthrough synthetic gear and bearing circulating oil that has been specifically engineered to deliver long-lasting protection for machines, delivering 12 times the oil life of mineral oils and double the oil life of regular synthetic oils, even in continuous high operating temperatures and under extreme operating conditions.
In addition to our high performance lubricants and fluids, we provide a range of technical services to help keep the machine running at peak efficiency while also extending machine and oil life, reducing downtime and lowering operating costs.
Mobil offers a complete range of lubricants for the Manufacturing sector, including OEM-approved products with years of proven performance, as well as advanced problem-solving synthetic oils, industrial oils and greases. Our range for the Manufacturing sector includes Mobil DTE 10 Excel™ Series, our high performance anti-wear hydraulic oils specifically designed to meet the needs of modern, high pressure, industrial and mobile equipment hydraulic systems; Mobilcut™ series – the aqueous metal working fluids that deliver a dependable performance in a wide array of metal removal processes; Mobil Vactra™ Oil Numbered Series – the premium-quality slideway lubricants specifically designed to meet the requirements for accuracy, aqueous coolant separability, and equipment protection of precision machine tools; Mobil SHC™ 600 – the exceptional performance gear and bearing oils designed to provide outstanding service in terms of equipment protection, oil life and problem-free operations; Mobil SHC Gear™ – the synthetic industrial gear oils designed to provide outstanding protection of gears and bearings; Mobil SHC Rarus™ – the supreme-performance air compressor lubricants; Mobil SHC Polyrex™ – the specifically designed greases to improve productivity in high temperature conditions; Mobilith SHC™- the superior performance greases designed for a wide variety of applications; Mobilgrease XHP™ – the extended-service lithium complex greases designed for a wide variety of heavy duty applications and operating conditions and Mobilgear™ 600 XP – the extra high-performance gear oils having outstanding extreme-pressure characteristics and load-carrying properties.
In terms of customization, let me share an example of a recent engagement with Modern Mould Limited, a leading organization in the plastics industry. The injection moulding major charged a new hydraulic oil in their machine and a heat exchanger malfunction resulted in water entering the oil. To manage the high production demand, the machine could not be stopped for oil replacement and running with contaminated oil would damage the pump and machine components. Offering a solution to Modern Mould Limited, Mobil’s Field Engineering team proposed to opt for online water removal with a low vacuum dehydrator. After completing the water removal procedure, the oil’s suitability for use was tested under Mobil Serv Lubricant Analysis program and it was found fit for further use. Thanks to Mobil Serv’s predictive maintenance and corrective action, the damage to the machine components was averted, the oil disposal was avoided and the high productivity was maintained, potentially saving 36 hours, 2200 litre of oil and revenue of INR 670,800!
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