30 November 2012 22:48 [Source: ICIS news]
NEW YORK (ICIS)--North America is expected to be slow in changing base oil stock types, a PetroCanada industry expert said while speaking at the 8th ICIS Pan-American Base Oils and Lubricants Conference that ended on Friday.
The large number of existing on-road vehicles, or car-park, is slow to turn over, so implementation will take time, said Doug Irvine of PetroCanada.
Different types of base oils are divided into groups according standards outlined for the industry by the American Petroleum Institute (API). These include Groups I, II and III, moving from higher viscosity grades in Group I to lower viscosities in Group II and lower still in Group III.
Increasingly lower viscosity base oils are needed to meet current and upcoming regulatory stipulations concerning environmental impact and fuel-economy, which have related but different base stock requirements.
“One API grade is not going to meet all the needs,” Irvine said.
One aspect of the Pan-American conference is to examine the supply-demand outlook for the Americas, wherein each of the base oil groups has slightly different but entwined fundamentals.
Regulatory and environmental stipulations are more stringent beginning in 2016, bringing industry attention to the expected rate of change needed in automotive lubricants, the key end-use for base oils.
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