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lithium 12 hydroxystearate grease is one of the most common lithium-based lubricants. It has many advantages over non-lithium greases including:
Excellent Adhesion to Metal – Good adhesion to metal can help cut down on reapplication and save time, which is important in the auto industry where the product is used most often.
High Performance & Stability – The thickener in lithium 12 hydroxystearate grease combines a high level of hydration and a relatively low viscosity index, making it an ideal choice for lubricating machinery.
The chemical structure of lithium 12 hydroxystearate is similar to that of calcium soap greases, with the thickener acid salts reacting with the hydration of a phosphate-containing base oil to form the finished grease. The grease has a higher dropping point than that of a non-lithium based grease with the same phosphate-containing base oil, but it performs well at lower temperatures than a grease with a different phosphate-containing base oil.
It has a higher oxidation resistance than a typical calcium soap grease, which makes it an appealing choice for lubricating corroded or damaged equipment.
Another advantage is its ability to withstand heat, which is important for automotive applications. The oxidation resistance of lithium 12 hydroxystearate grease is superior to that of calcium soap grease, which can easily burn out if the temperature gets too high.
In addition to lowering the cost of raw materials, manufacturing lithium greases can be more efficient by streamlining production. For instance, some manufacturers are using a stable suspension of lithium hydroxide monohydrate in base oil, which undergoes a fast, efficient reaction in a grease kettle to produce a grease (simple or complex) with improved thickener yield, explains Waynick.