High Oleic Soybean Oil Fire Resistant Hydraulic Fluid and Environmentally Acceptable Fluid
CommercializationFireHigh oleicIndustrial UsesLubricants
Parent Project:
This is the first year of this project.
Lead Principal Investigator:
Dr. Na, Fuchs Lubricants Company
Co-Principal Investigators:
Project Code:
Contributing Organization (Checkoff):
Institution Funded:
Brief Project Summary:
The main objective of this project is to formulate high oleic soybean oil as a primary base oil in a fire-resistant hydraulic fluid and environmentally acceptable hydraulic fluid for numerous industrial and mobile applications such as mining, steel production, automotive component manufacturing, forestry, and agriculture.
Information And Results
Project Summary

Project Objectives

Project Deliverables

Progress Of Work

Final Project Results

The Fuchs team initiated the project in October 2022, working closely with a range of experts and stakeholders. Our goal was to develop fire-resistant hydraulic fluids (FRHFs) and environmentally acceptable and biodegradable lubricants (EALs), utilizing high oleic soybean oil (HOSO). We started by delving into extensive research and securing essential samples, thanks to valuable support from Smith Bucklin and Omni Tech. Through this initial phase, we gained a deep understanding of the soybean oil industry, connected with industry experts, and identified potential HOSO suppliers. Leveraging our extensive knowledge of hydraulic oils and the specific applications in mind, we defined critical tests and established detailed specifications for both FRHFs and EALs. This led to continued rounds of internal discussions, resource allocation, and project planning. With HOSO samples in hand and background from commercialized FRHF’s based on HO canola oil, multiple candidate formulas were crafted for both FRHFs and EALs, covering various viscosity grades. Laboratory testing followed, evaluating essential physical and chemical properties, as well as tribological performance. These evaluations offered crucial insights into target applications and performance enhancements achieved with HOSO. Additionally, we integrated HOSO into our internal raw material database and explored considerations regarding demand and pricing. As we progressed, our team collaborated closely with additive suppliers, external labs, and industry consultants to design formulations suited for demanding applications. This involved extensive literature research and expert consultations. We developed internal simulation test methods to effectively assess lubricity performance. Our work continued with rigorous testing, involving partnerships with our additive suppliers to successfully overcome pour point challenges seen with HOSO and refine our final formulations. Upon completing internal assessments and selecting our ultimate formulations, we moved forward with required flammability and resilience testing approvals from Factory Mutual (FM) and Mining Safety and Health Approval (MSHA). This project encompassed the development of fire-resistant hydraulic fluids in 46 and 68 grades and environmentally acceptable lubricants in the same grades. We conducted pilot and pre-commercial runs for these formulations, sending samples for external approvals, such as FM and MSHA, as well as comprehensive internationally accepted OECD testing (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) related to bioaccumulation, biodegradation, and aquatic toxicity.

Benefit To Soybean Farmers

A successful market introduction typically positions FUCHS to capture a 3% market share, translating to an estimated high oleic soybean use rate of 2.7 million pounds per year for fire-resistant hydraulic fluids and 2.1 million pounds per year for environmentally acceptable lubricants by 2027. Looking forward, we are targeting a mature market share of 10% by 2030, with projected usage rates of 10 million pounds per year for fire-resistant hydraulic fluids and 8 million pounds per year for environmentally acceptable lubricants, as early as 2030. These projections underscore our commitment to advancing sustainable solutions and expanding market opportunities for soybean farmers.

The United Soybean Research Retention policy will display final reports with the project once completed but working files will be purged after three years. And financial information after seven years. All pertinent information is in the final report or if you want more information, please contact the project lead at your state soybean organization or principal investigator listed on the project.