FluidScan 1200 - Portable Marine Base Number Analyzer

Daily monitoring of the Base Number (BN) is currently recommended by marine engine suppliers in order to optimize cylinder lubrication feed rate and determine the residual BN of the piston underside oil. Changes in vessel operation are leading to the development of innovations in engine monitoring.

All vessels in operation are affected by the shift to “slow steaming” and the resulting “cold corrosion”. Increased instances of early failure due to cylinder scaling and cylinder scuffing are due to improper lubrication in constantly changing engine running conditions.

A few vessels are affected by new sulfur emissions requirements considered to be a secondary driver. Running with multiple fuel types means significant changes in lubrication BN to compensate for high fluctuations in acidic conditions in the cylinders.

The FluidScan is considered to be an ideal device that will help the engine run efficiently. One effective way to prevent "cold corrosion" is by controlling the cylinder oil BN at the inlet and drain daily.

Features and Benefits

The main features and benefits of the FluidScan Q1200 are as follows:

Benefits Features
Reduce lubrication oil costs
  • Optimize feed rate to the cylinders, eliminating wasteful over-lubrication.
  • Allows ship engineers to quickly comply with manufacturer recommendation for BN in new and residual cylinder oils.
Increase component lifetime
  • Reduce "cold corrosion" due to the effects of slow steaming.
  • Reduce cylinder scuffing due to insufficient lubrication.
  • Prevent scaling which results from over-lubrication.
Innovative BN measurement and maintenance
  • Fast and easy to use - needs just one drop of oil and one minute to test.
  • Color coded alarm limits for easy interpretation of results.
  • Reduced testing costs - solvent-free and few consumables. No hazardous chemicals.
  • More accurate - avoid operator error of traditional onboard tests. Correlates with ASTM D2896.
Easily upgradeable to enable oil analysis for other shipboard equipment
  • The Q1210 measures BN for marine cylinder oil.
  • The Q1220 measures BN for marine cylinder oil plus additonal parameters in 2-stroke systems oil and other 4-stroke engine oils.
  • The Q1230 includes all of the above plus oils used in machinery components such as gear boxes, compressors, hydraulic systems, turbines, and transmissions.



Large, two-stroke diesel engines are used in more than 30,000 ships all over the world. Due to over lubrication, they waste in excess of US$2 billion of cylinder oil annually. This develops more than 1.25 million tons of contaminated drain oil that requires proper disposal. This over-lubrication in slow speed, two-stroke marine diesel engines can cost ship owners and managers more than $100,000 per year per ship.

Cylinder under-lubrication leads to cold corrosion and early failure of expensive engine components such as cylinder liners, piston rings and pistons. Careful monitoring of cylinder oil BN enables the operator to use enough oil in order to prevent cold corrosion without wasting valuable additives and oil.

Recommended by the engine designer

  • See Wärtsilä Services technical bulletin RT-161
  • Upgradeable software enables the user to monitor lubricating oil condition on a wide range of shipboard equipment. The FluidScan Q1230 is capable of monitoring lubricating oils for TBN, sulfation, TAN, water, soot and oxidation
  • Up to 5000 measurement results can be stored by FluidScan software, which exports these results by .csv file. This allows the operator to track and store measurements by cylinder for their records and enables trending of measurements
  • Tightly controlling BN using an accurate, easy to use, simple analyzer like the FluidScan 1200 helps to avoid cold corrosion. Measuring corrosive iron will not be needed if the residual cylinder oil BN is properly controlled in a manner that it is not allowed to fall below 15 (Wärtsilä recommended limit)
  • It is possible to carry a battery powered portable analyzer to the test site instead of sending oil samples back to a central laboratory
  • Allows rapid adjustment of cylinder oil lubrication rates when leaving or entering Sulfur Emission Control Areas

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