Base oils are used for many applications that include metal processing fluid, motor oil, and lubricating greases. Refining crude oil is the main source of base oil. In this refinery process, crude oils are heated at a higher temperature that separates the distillates from one another. During this process, crude oil is separated into two forms, which are known as light or heavy hydrocarbons. Light hydrocarbon can be refined to produce petrol and other oils. On the other hand, heavy hydrocarbons are used to produce base oil.
Various types of crude oils offered by a base oil supplier help to refine base oil. The most common type of crude oil is paraffinic crude oil. Here are the top characteristics of base oil that determines by their performance.
- Viscosity Index
- Base oils are pure
- They have volatility
- They have thermal stability
- Base oils have sulfur and saturate content
- They have Hydrolytic stability
- Pour point
Some top crude oil refineries categorized base oils into four categories. Read here about these groups.
Group I base oil useful for solvent extraction that helps to remove undesirable aspects of the original oil. The quality of this base oil is determined by the range of viscosity index and the range of temperature they bear. Over time, the demand for this base oil is declining but still many applications consider this type of base oil like engine oil, marine lubricants, and industrial applications.
Group II base oil refers to mineral oils. These base oils contain 90% saturates and 0.03% sulfur. The range of viscosity index in these oils is 80 to 120. This type of base oil helps to improve anti-oxidation properties than group one. But these base oils are much expensive and complex to manufacture.
This group is considered one of the best petroleum base oil. Group three contains 90% saturate and 0.03% sulfur. The biggest difference between this group with others is they have a viscosity index range that is above 120. In the creation of group III base oil, a higher temperature is used to separate base oil.
Group IV base oils based on polyalphaolefin. These base oils are produced with different methods than the earlier three groups. They have a greater viscosity index range, which is above 140.
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