Published: Jan 2010
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WHITE MINERAL OILS ARE VISCOUS LIQUIDS that are derived from petroleum. They are complex mixtures of saturated hydrocarbons including straight chain, branched chain, and ring structures, some of which have all three configurations. The relative concentration of straight or branched chain hydrocarbons (paraffins) and the saturated ring structures (naphthenes) determines the oils' identity as being paraffinic or naphthenic. Many different standard-setting groups in the food, medical, and cosmetic industries, as well as other individual trade associations representing specific applications, define the chemical and physical properties of white mineral oils. Uses and applications are identified by national regulatory agencies along with specific material specifications. As defined by USP-31, white mineral oil is a “purified” mixture of liquid hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum. It may contain a suitable stabilizer.
Copeland, C. Monroe
Lubricants Compliance Manager, CITGO Petroleum Corporation, Houston, TX