Metalworking Fluids Additives
Specialty Additives for Metalworking Fluids
In the metalworking industry, manufacturers seek new and innovative methods to improve performance while addressing the market’s environmental concerns. Solvay’s broad portfolio of specialty additives for metalworking fluids enables fluid formulators to overcome some of today’s and future most pressing challenges.
Solvay’s range of sustainable metalworking emulsifiers enhances foam control with low eco-toxicity for operations such as cutting and hot rolling. Our phosphate-esters and anti-wear additives demonstrate excellent compatibility with water for optimal performance of all types of formulations. Additionally, with a versatile selection of corrosion and staining inhibitors, foam control agents and coupling agents, Solvay’s additives for metalworking fluids offer environmentally friendly solutions with high compatibility and outstanding efficiency.
Our Complete Metalworking Fluids Additives Portfolio
Versatile, High-Performance Emulsifiers
High-speed machining continues to increase in popularity and accessibility, driving the need for foam reduction and ingredients that provide enhanced defoaming. Hard-water compatibility also drives the industry forward, enabling fluid suppliers and formulators to develop high-performance formulas for an array of end-use applications. Our specialty emulsifiers, anti-wear agents, corrosion and staining inhibitors, foam control additives and coupling agents are critical mainstays for metalworking fluids, as “tap” or “municipal” water is rarely soft.
Metalworking formulations must be suitable for a wide variety of locations and a range of water compositions. Additionally, regulations for today’s metalworking fluids are increasingly stringent regarding biocides such as boric acid, formaldehyde releasers and more, which leads to the demand for milder labeling and the development of biostable emulsifiers. Formulators face the challenge of meeting these requirements and industry demands while maintaining a cost-effective approach with globally available raw materials.
Solvay’s portfolio of versatile, high-performance emulsifiers for metalworking fluids is specifically designed to meet and exceed these industry demands. Our multifunctional additives for metalworking fluids are well-suited for soluble oils and semi-synthetic fluid formulations. These low toxicity, multifunctional additives for metalworking fluids span a range of chemistry types, and provide formulators with excellent wetting, lubricating, detergency and foam-reduction benefits.
- Alkoxylated phosphate-esters (anionic): Lubrhophos® Range and Rhodafac® Range
- Alcohol alkoxylates (non ionic): Rhodasurf® Range and Antarox® Range
- Fatty acid ethoxylates (non ionic): Alkamuls® Range
- Ether-carboxylates (anionic): Geropon® HW 15
- Amine ethoxylates (non ionic): Fentacare® Range
As smaller reservoirs have become the industry standard, the metalworking industry is trending toward more high-pressure, high-speed sprays, which inevitably produce more foam. These higher foam levels can be extremely problematic, as they can flood equipment and make it difficult for workers to see. Accordingly, metalworking fluid formulators must deliver solutions with excellent foam-control properties to enable more efficient processing in today’s manufacturing environments. Solvay’s low-foaming emulsifiers have been specifically designed to fill this requirement, with a wide range of high-compatibility, eco-friendly solutions.
- Antarox® CST/77 - a versatile emulsifier with outstanding foam control. Specially designed for cutting fluids and hot rolling fluids, this additive serves as a sustainable alternative to conventional materials. Antarox® CST/77 is designed with globally available raw materials, has no classification and is readily biodegradable.
- Antarox® FM/14 - a co-emulsifier that brings extra foam control to formulations. This emulsifier is designed for more foam control improvement than comparable materials.
- Alkamuls® VO/2005 - a non-classified, non-ecotoxic emulsifier, this additive is non-corrosive to skin/eyes and biodegradable. With its excellent emulsion formation and stability, Alkamuls® VO 2005 exhibits low foam to ultra-low foam, and is especially suitable for synthetic formulations.
The formation of lime soap during metalworking can result from the addition of soap or other anionic surfactants to hard water compositions. Lime soap can decrease worker visibility and slow the process. As a consequence, ingredients and materials used for modern metalworking fluid formulation must provide lime soap dispersion benefits. Solvay’s selection of soap suppressing and soap dispersing additives provides formulators with specially designed emulsifiers to improve fluid performance and enhance metalworking productivity.
- Lubrhophos® LF800 - sustainable phosphate ester with no eco-toxicity, outstanding defoaming and limited soap formation. This additive is specially designed for cutting fluids and hot rolling fluids, as it provides AW performance, corrosion protection and staining inhibition.
- Geropon® HW 15 - biodegradable ether-carboxylates that provide robust emulsions with mineral oils, excellent lime soap dispersion, and outstanding stability.
Extreme Pressure / Anti-Wear Agents
Industrial operations, metalworking fluids and lubricants must be durable enough to absorb high pressure and speed to avoid welding. Neat oils, soluble oils, semi-synthetic fluids and synthetic fluids alike require performance additives to deliver extreme pressure / anti-wear properties. These additives provide the formulation with the ability to reduce wear on metal surfaces by forming a protective coating or film on the workpiece. Solvay’s range of anti-wear additives is specifically designed to comply with industry regulations and provide formulations with an array of anti-wear properties and performance benefits. Lubrhophos® LB400E for example, is a high-performance anti-wear additive for water-based cutting fluids, polishing lubricants, rolling oils, etc. to provide excellent emulsification, corrosion resistance and staining inhibition.
Corrosion and Staining Inhibitors
As the metalworking industry trends toward lighter alloys such as aluminum and magnesium, corrosion and staining inhibition becomes increasingly integral to high-performance fluid formulations. These solutions form a hydrophobic layer on the metal’s surface via adsorption, and different metals require distinct formulations to sufficiently mitigate corrosion and staining, due to their respective intrinsic properties. Solvay’s range of corrosion and staining inhibitors for metalworking fluids facilitates a simplified inventory for formulators with a selection of aluminum, copper, and ferrous metal inhibitors.
To control friction, reduce wear and improve the adhesion of lubricating film, Solvay offers a large choice of fatty acid esters to act as friction modifiers.
Buffers and Dispersants
Amines and amino alcohols are commonly used in metalworking fluid concentrates, to neutralize acidic components. As buffer, they maintain alkaline pH once diluted by the end user. Our range of aminic buffering additives also provide corrosion protection. In the dispersion area, Mirapol WT is used for synthetic fluids and has proven its efficiency in tramp oil separation and iron powder dispersion.
Metalworking fluids often require coupling agents to hold the formulation together. Solvay’s coupling agent, Igepal® OD410, is a solvent specifically designed to provide metalworking fluid emulsions with advanced stabilizing technology for optimal performance and processing.