Evaluating Low-Lubricity Fluids like Diesel and Gasoline

In diesel vehicles, a fuel pump is a vital component. For the sliding parts in the fuel pump, diesel fuel is the only lubrication source.

Therefore a fuel pump’s service life is largely governed by the diesel fuel’s lubricity, which is influenced by its quality, in turn. Several factors can influence the quality of diesel fuel, such as the source of the crude oil, refineries, sulfur content, and storage methods.

The "High-Frequency Reciprocating Rig" (HFRR 4.2) available from Ducom is employed to test the lubricity behavior (or wear resistance and friction coefficient) of diesel fuels based on standards such as ISO 12156-1:2016 and ASTM D6079-11(2016). The mean wear scar diameter (MWSD) on the ball is often used to find the diesel fuel quality.

It is also possible to use the Ducom HFRR for experiments other than those based on ISO and ASTM standards since it has a wider parameter range. This enables customized testing with a load of 1 to 10 N, frequency of 10 to 60 Hz, humidity of 35 to 80 %RH, and temperature of RT to 100 °C.

Applications (Top 6)

  • The role of various biofuels in the lubricity of diesel fuels
  • Quality control of diesel fuels from different supply chain methods or refineries
  • Lubricity behavior of engine oils at high temperatures as a function of its base oil, viscosity modifiers, and anti-wear additives
  • Screening the range of boundary additives and viscosity modifiers to enhance the lubricity of low-sulfur diesel
  • Tribocorrosion behavior of coatings and lubricants
  • The synergistic effect of diesel fuel components and coatings in estimating the service life of fuel pumps


  • Compact design: Small-sized tabletop device requires very little space in the lab. Design features of the HFRR can minimize the servicing cost and maintenance compared to any other high-frequency reciprocating rig currently available on the market.
  • Applicable for multidisciplinary research: HFRR is well known for analyzing diesel lubricity according to the ISO and ASTM standards. But the extensive range of functional features in Ducom HFRR provides test solutions beyond the specified standards. Therefore, it can be useful to investigate other lubricants like engine oils and greases.
  • The exclusive humidity control system maintains the relative air humidity within a closed case in the HFRR constant without any effect on the temperature of the conditioned air. A time-honored condensation and evaporation cycle is employed to maintain the relative air humidity in the HFRR chamber. The need for using salts that must be chosen based on the cabinet temperature is avoided. Since salts are not needed, the need for a desiccant tray is also avoided.
  • Mooha 4.0: Tribometer includes industry 4.0 technology that employs an augmented reality (AR)-based app on mobile. Users can observe the friction data, machine health, and data history in real time in 3D format from anywhere in the world. All the data produced from the sensors is centralized through big data analytics in the cloud storage. This data bank can be accessed from remote locations through the performance analytics-based desktop dashboard. The data storage and security are ISO 20546 compliant.

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