How to choose a lubricant for new regulations

Ian Thurloway of Chevron Marine outlines the benefits that cruise ship operators will see when choosing its Taro XL high-performance diesel engine oil

How to choose a lubricant for new regulations
The Taro XL series protects trunk piston engines running on high sulphur fuels, suited to cruise vessels with scrubbers

This article was first published in the Autumn/Winter 2019 issue of International Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.

With the International Maritime Organization’s 2020 sulphur cap legislation fast approaching, much of the focus has been on the deep-sea, deep-draft international merchant fleet and the operators’ strategy for compliance.

However, while small, the cruise industry remains an important part of the world fleet, with a high percentage of ship operators opting to implement emission abatement technology or exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers) to meet the future regulations. When it comes to using high-sulphur bunker fuels and scrubbers, choosing the right lubricant is critical for maintaining long-term engine performance and cleanliness, and to reduce unscheduled downtime and minimise costs.

Unlike cylinder lubricants, which are burnt in the combustion process, trunk piston engine oils (TPEOs) remain within the crankcase and are designed to provide excellent neutralising capability and thermal stability as well as ‘dispersancy’. For high-sulphur fuel oil applications, Chevron Marine has developed Taro XL. It has been formulated to deliver high alkalinity retention, extending the operating life of the lubricant and driving maintenance costs down.

Chevron Marine supplies a range of medium-speed TPEOs that are designed and formulated for use with various bunker fuels and sulphur levels. The Taro XL series is available in 40 and 50 BN (base number) and provides excellent protection for trunk piston engines running on high sulphur fuels, such as those used by cruise vessels with scrubbers. When the ratio of oil contamination to that of BN depletion is greater than the higher BN levels of the Taro XL series, it results in excellent cleanliness and longer drain intervals, which means a lower overall cost of operation.

Taro XL series lubricants are blended with highly refined base oils and carefully selected additives. They have very good viscosity control when used in severe high-temperature service, and their BN retention characteristics help to promote corrosive wear over long periods of operation. The unique detergent and dispersant additive system promote piston cleanliness, as well as control of fuel contaminants. This results in extreme reduction of both ‘hot’ (piston lands and grooves, piston under crown, purifier preheaters) and ‘cold’ (crankcase, cambox, rocker area, fuel pumps, purifier bowl) deposits. Taro XL series lubricants also provide a high degree of water tolerance and have good water separation.

To complement the Taro XL product technology, Chevron Marine’s FAST fluid analysis programme – which protects vessels with expert analysis and fully reviewed reports – enables decisions to be made to balance the condition of an engine. FAST helps cruise operators manage the condition of all lubricated equipment onboard their vessels, including trunk piston engines, to ensure optimal performance.

This article was first published in the Autumn/Winter 2019 issue of International Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.

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By Ian Thurloway
08 January 2020

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