There are several industrial applications in which conductive lubricants are necessary. These specialized lubricants can serve one of two purposes: either to ensure that an electrical circuit remains closed and functional while protecting the two metal parts in contact with one another, or to offset static discharge that might be harmful to a machine system. In the latter case, the lubricant typically serves as a ground, allowing static discharge to pass through a machine part instead of building up, arcing and causing pitting which accelerates wear and tear.
Nuclear lubricants with conductive properties
In either case, especially in the nuclear industry, the choice of lubricant usually includes – either as a main constituent or additive – chemical compounds with naturally high levels of conductivity. Molybdenum disulfide is one example of a natural semi-conductor that serves the purpose, while also conforming to the various tribological parameters of nuclear systems.
Neolube® No. 2
While there are many conductive lubricants used in other industries, such is in the automotive design and even the production of printers, the stringent requirements of the nuclear industry mean that lubricants with conductive properties must be suitable for use under extreme temperature and pressure. An example of this is Huron Industries’ Neolube® No. 2, a dry film lubricant used in nuclear applications as an anti-seize compound, thread lubricant, or for lubricating moving parts and rubbing surfaces. Aside from its high lubricity and provision of clean, long-wearing lubrication, it also acts as a resistance coating to provide conductivity and release properties to non-conductive substrates. Its conductivity is variable, making it versatile and suitable for use on various surfaces and in a range of tribological systems.
Huron Industries manufactures a range of nuclear lubricants – including conductive lubricants – for use in power generators and other nuclear facilities. Contact us for more information on our products.