Researchers at Sunway University in Malaysia have developed and produced graphene-based lubricants to improve automotive and industrial lubricants. They aim to commercialize their graphene-based nanolubricant 'Infinoil' within the year, which can reduce friction and wear, improving engine efficiency in automotive and industrial applications.
"Wear of engines and machinery continues to be a global concern costing billions annually. Traditional lubricants which use chemical additives have reached the threshold limit in-terms of efficiency. To meet the modern engineering lubrication challenges which primarily deal with nanoscale-friction and thermal performance, we took up nanomaterials to find a solution. Having successfully exploited metallic, metal oxides, graphene and other 2-dimensional materials for heat transfer applications since 2007, our current focus is on heat transfer fluids which also include nanolubricants," said the researchers.
'Infinoil' nanolubricants reduce wear and remove heat from the engine and machine components through several mechanisms at the nano-scale. Last year in November, 'Infinoil' was tested at the F1 circuit in Sepang, Malaysia. The vehicle it was tested on ran for a 24- hour period, displaying outstanding endurance. 'Infinoil' was found to resist degradation better than other lubricants used during the race. "Racing requires high performance lubricants that can resist extreme conditions. When we explained the technology of our product, the team was excited to test the same in pre-race trials and based on the excellent performance during trials, the team decided to go with our product for the actual race," explained the team.
The nanolubricant reportedly meets American Petroleum Institute (API), Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards. The advantages of the nanolubricant include lower wear and friction; higher heat transfer capacity; lower oil volatility; which would ultimately result in lower fuel consumption.
The team also tested 'Infinoil' at third party certified labs, 1000cc, 1800cc and 4-stroke single cylinder engines used in motor-bikes.