AN FT-IR BASED INSTRUMENT FOR THE EVALUATION OF SYNTHETIC LUBRICANTS
Small Business Information
P. O. Box 380379, East Hartford, CT, 06138
AbstractA typical Air Force base will produce several thousand gallons per year of used turbine engine lubricants. These lubricants can be collected on site and sold at relatively low cost for other uses (e.g., plasticizer). The potential for contamination of the collected lubricants, particularly with halogenated compounds such as degreasing solvents or turbine fuels, reduces the effectiveness of a previously developed reclamation process. The innovation is the use of a novel thermal/Fourier Transform Infrared (FT-IR) analysis technique in combination with advanced data analysis methods to develop an on-site, user friendly, low cost, and reliable means of identifying contamination in used turbine engine lubricants. The overall objective of the proposed Phase I program is to demonstrate the feasibility of thermal analysis combined with a multi-mode FT-IR analysis of the gaseous products for identification of contamination of synthetic lubricants. This program would be divided into four specific tasks: 1) sample selection and preparation; 2) analysis studies in a multi-mode thermal/FT-IR instrument; 3) data analysis to determine detectability limits and quantitation of contaminants; 4) assessment of requirements for prototype instrument that would be built and tested under the Phase II program. The use of neural network analysis to identify the contaminants of interest would be investigated in Phase I and fully developed in Phase II.
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