With the mining companies and contractors are focusing on increased productivity and operational efficiency, lubricant manufacturers are positive on the demand for technologically advanced products that can help the mining equipment meet the demands of productivity and operational efficiency.
Equipment working at mining sites need to perform reliably and efficiently, without major breakdown and other issues. Safe and efficient operation is imperative for mining equipment to increase productivity and safety in mining operations. Lubricants play a major role in this by minimising wear and tear of machinery parts and safeguard the equipment in the harshest conditions.
Coal and iron ore mining together constitute more than 65 per cent of the total global mining market. In India, coal constitutes the largest share in mining while iron ore and limestone mining follow. Says Sandeep Ganjoo, Assistant General Manager - Business Development, Apar Industries Ltd, 'India is emerging as one of the major producers of the key industrial ores and minerals. With more equipment put into action, lubricants have an increased demand for efficient and productive operation of mining equipment.'
Mining equipment are used under extreme temperature and pressure conditions which require regular lubrication. Hence, growth of the mining industry acts as a major driver for the mining lubricants market. 'Increase in the demand for coal in power generation, and the growing demand for base metals such as copper, nickel, lead, zinc, iron and others will drive the demand for mining equipment, fuelling the demand for mining lubricants,' says Karoly Repas, Senior Vice President - Sales, Marketing and Technical, Total Oil India Pvt Ltd's Lubricants Division.
According to him, the increased demand for better quality mining lubricants acts as a driver for the lubricants market growth. Quality products that can sustain extreme temperatures and pressures are preferred by the mining industry. Most manufacturers of mining lubricants focus on the development of products that are anti-oxidant, waterproof, rust preventive, and non-toxic.
Emerging trends The global mining lubricants market is expected to reach $3.09 billion by 2025, according to Ganjoo. He says, 'The market is expected to witness a CAGR of 4.6 per cent over the forecast period, owing to rising demand for mining lubricants. Lubricants help in reducing the downtime due to frequent oil changes, maintenance and components failures. Also, economising high cost of equipment will propel industry expansion over the forecast period.' Ganjoo further adds,'Asia-Pacific is expected to show high volume gains at a CAGR of 5.3 per cent from 2017 to 2025. Demand for these lubricants was highest in coal mining at 217.9 kilo tonne in 2015. Iron ore mining accounted for 23.5 per cent of the overall share in 2016 and is likely to witness substantial growth as a result of increased demand for steel in developing nations, mainly China and India as well as dependence on steel for construction and transportation purposes.'
Repas is bullish on the mining lubricant market and its growth opportunities in the coming years. 'The mining lubricants market in India was valued at $120.3 million in 2016, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.4 per cent from 2017 to 2022. The Indian mining lubricants market is the second-largest in Asia- Pacific. Growth of this market is due to the significant efforts made by the Central Government, to accelerate the growth of the mining industry through speedy clearances and transparent auctions,' he observes.
Ganjoo explains, 'Lubricants market for mining and quarry applications will grow steadily during the next four years. Coal India has plans to achieve 1.5 billion tonne of coal production by 2025. To meet these plans, Coal India will require high capacity heavy earthmoving machinery which in turn will increase the potential of lubricants in mining industry.'
According to him, growth of drilling and exploration activities on a global level has also increased the demand for mining equipment, which has a direct and positive impact on the demand for lubricants. Stringent regulations imposed by government bodies towards environment protection are anticipated to augment the demand for bio-based lubricants. Mineral oil lubricants were the most extensively used and accounting for 83.8 per cent of the global volume share in 2016.
Lubricants have a bright future ahead with a smooth transition from standard oils to customised oils and speciality oils that can withstand the extreme working conditions. Ganjoo says, 'Cost reduction is vital to any mining operation, so lubricants that will protect mining equipment for extended periods under the toughest conditions are required, which allows mining companies to extend the life of their equipment, decrease oil consumption and reduce logistics costs. Strong economic growth is expected in Indian mining industry in the next few years, creating the potential for rapid growth in lubricant consumption.'
On the emission related trends, he observes, 'With new emission norms effective 2020, the entire focus of lubricant industry has shifted towards upgradation of engine oils. The product meeting specifications like API CJ4, CK4 and FA4 will be in demand to meet the desired performance levels. To cut investments on maintenance, mining industry is looking forward for increased production levels with lesser down time, which demands long drain interval, energy efficiency and high quality lubricants.'
According to Repas, growth in the Asia-Pacific mining industry is expected to drive the global mining lubricants market from 2016 to 2021. He adds, 'The market for mining lubricants in emerging countries, such as China and India, is growing rapidly owing to the rising demand from various end-user industries. Emerging automated lubrication systems is one of the key opportunities of the mining lubricants market. Growing mining industries in BRICS economies is expected to be a lucrative opportunity for mining lubricants market players.'
Improper lubrication results in increased operational cost and downtime. Repas highlights on the importance of automated lubrication process to improve productivity and safety of machines. He says, 'With increasing competition and growing challenges, the availability of highly updated technology is a vital factor for the proper functioning of the mining industry. Additionally, due to the increasing cost of workforce and safety requirements, there is a growing need for process automation. Automatic lubrication systems reduce the number of breakdowns due to equipment failure. The use of automation helps increase the production rate, reduce labour cost, and improve worker safety and product quality. Consequently, majority of end-user market players prefer automated lubrication, which, in turn, is driving the consumption of mining lubricants.'
With more mining activities anticipated in future and new improved high capacity machines are being introduced in the mining market, lubricants, especially that can meet the emerging requirements of operational efficiency and productivity, will have a promising future.
LUBRICANTS FOR MINING FROM APAR industries
Apar Industries has the entire range of lubricants specially designed for mining industry. We use Group II+ base oils in our entire range of mining lubricants to combat the after-effects of long working cycle, environment, load cycles, idling, road gradient etc. Our lubricants are fortified with the latest technology additives to provide excellent frictional characteristics for energy-efficient lubrication. We blend the entire range of engine oils up till API CJ4 all approved and certified by American Petroleum Institute (API). Our entire range of hydraulic fluids developed for mining industry is approved by Rexroth Bosch (HLP/HVLP/HVI). As a responsible lubricant supplier, our major aim is to blend the best quality lubricants to enhance equipment life, negligible downtime and simultaneously increase drain intervals for better commercial ability to lower the total cost to customer. As far as hydraulic fluids are concerned, we focus more on the performance characteristics like TOST life, air release values, FZG load carrying capacity, pump wear, and demulsibilty characteristics. Similarly, for engine oils, we focus more on TBN retention, CCS viscosity, sulphated ash, shear stability, dispersant and detergent technology.
Our range of lubricants for mining also include transmission oils. Apar is now the largest transmission oil supplier to OEMs in India, especially the wet brake/UTTO oils. We have quality driven transmission oils fortified with the latest technology additives to combat transmission noise/chattering/shuddering and provide excellent frictional characteristics to improve fuel economy and gear shifting. Our transmission oils meet and exceed the latest specifications laid by various original equipment manufacturers like Caterpillar TO4.
We have synthetic base hydraulic fluids specifically developed for mining industry validated by IIP Dehradun. We have also developed speciality grease product with a weld load exceeding 800 kg for high shock load applications. AdBlue (aqueous urea solution) is available in our product range for equipment fitted with SCR technology to meet new stringent emission norms. Currently in India, we are the only lubricant company having separate plant facilities to blend AdBlue.
Our lubricants and mining experts can help customers reduce their costs by carrying full lube survey at their sites, thus creating awareness through training programmes to focus more on good lubrication practices, product rationalisation, waste management etc. All these give support to reducing the total cost of ownership (TCO) in mining operations.
We also provide all-round back-up in terms of condition-based monitoring services to emphasize more on proactive maintenance practice to lower the downtime and improve production efficiency. We have DSIR approved R&D and NABL accredited lubricant laboratory to support all types of product upgradation and oil analysis.
- Sandeep Ganjoo
MINING LUBRICANTS AND SOLUTIONS FROM TOTAL
Total offers mining lubricants in mineral as well as synthetic categories for all types of equipment functions. Our product range includes lubricants for engines, manual transmissions, automatic transmissions, hydraulics, greases, gear oils, compressor oils, special oils for pneumatic tools, heat transfer fluids, solvents and detergents, combustion improvement additives, anti-freezes and coolants.
Total Rubia Works is a comprehensive range of high performing engine oils dedicated to construction and mining equipment. The equipment have to function in extreme temperatures and harsh working conditions. This results into extreme pressure on engine.
Total Rubia Works delivers superior resistance against oxidation, soot dispersency and detergency. It helps the engine and equipment to operate to the best of their potential to deliver superior performance.
To prevent engine scuffing in the field, a laboratory test called the Hot Tube Test has been established by Komatsu in order to evaluate the high temperature stability of diesel engine oils. Total Rubia meets the stringent performance standards of Hot Tube Test.
- Karoly Repas
- Sudheer Vathiyath