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Ensuring Confidence in the Performance of


a Finished Lubricant through quality assuring the development of an additive package


Andrew Goddard, Chairman, Verification of Lubricant Specifications


The aim of VLS is to help ensure a level playing field that benefits all industry participants by supporting free, fair and open competition whilst providing product choice that benefits End Users. Additives play a major part in the integrity of a finished lubricant formulation as the performance of the product is directly related to the technology that is deployed through an additive package.


So how can lubricant blenders and marketers be confident that an additive package has been developed in a way that assures the performance of the finished lubricant? Lubricant marketers looking to make more informed choices about additive suppliers might consider the process by which additive packages have been developed and tested before they even reach a finished lubricant.


One way would be to look at the quality assurance systems underpinning the development and testing of additives used by a technology provider. Certainly international standards including the test methodologies of ASTM International or those of the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) such as 17025, for the testing and calibration of laboratories, have a role to play in assuring


48 LUBE MAGAZINE NO.160 DECEMBER 2020


development processes for lubricants. The role of trade associations and sector-specific controls included in Codes of Practice, for example, also have a role to play.


One such Code of Practice has been established by the Additive Technical Committee (ATC), the representative body for additive companies. The ATC Code provides lubricant marketers with a further degree of assurance above that of ISO or ASTM, that a specific additive package has been developed in a reliable and consistent manner.


Established in 1974, ATC provides a forum for additive companies to discuss technical and regulatory matters impacting upon lubricant and fuel applications. Companies joining ATC sign up to a voluntary Code of Practice which forms part of the European Engine Lubricant Quality Management System, or EELQMS, along with the engine oil sequences of the European Association of OEMs, ACEA, and ATIEL, the European Technical Association’s Code of Practice. The ATC Code is also available to non- members.


The ATC Code of Practice assures the development of an additive package by setting out the precise operation of engine testing and consistent reporting


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