SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1951

Viscosity-Shear Behavior of Two Non-Newtonian Polymer-Blended Oils


For the past eight years the Petroleum Refining Laboratory has been engaged in preparing and studying the properties of special oils, lubricants and hydraulic fluids containing polymers to improve the viscosity-temperature characteristics of the fluid. In investigating these polymer-containing fluids, (Table I) it became necessary to study two viscosity properties not normally encountered in conventional types of mineral oils. In one case in this study it was found that the viscosity of a polymer-containing oil could be permanently lowered if the solution of polymer in oil were subjected to an intense and prolonged shearing action under conditions where there was extreme attrition and turbulence in the oil. In the second case, it was found, when the oil containing the polymer was subjected to high rates of shear in streamline flow, that there was a temporary loss in viscosity which reappeared when the shearing stress was removed. These two effects have been measured separately in various types of test apparatus as well as under simulated service conditions. The permanent viscosity loss induced by shear has been produced for quantitative measurement by using piston, gear, and vane types of hydraulic pumps which were equipped with various pressure loading devices such as balanced relief valves, orifices, and capillaries. A standard procedure that has evolved from this work is the Army-Navy Specification AN-0-366 shear stability test that is used to measure permanent viscosity loss in aircraft hydraulic fluids. Several methods have been used for measuring temporary viscosity loss due to shear. For this investigation the viscosity loss was determined by measuring flow through calibrated metal capillaries using a hydraulic pump to attain extremely high rates of shear while maintaining streamline flow. The device used for this work is designated as the PRL high shear viscometer.

Author Information

Fenske, M.
The Pennsylvania State College, State College, Pa.
Klaus, E.
The Pennsylvania State College, State College, Pa.
Dannenbrink, R.
The Pennsylvania State College, State College, Pa.
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Developed by Committee: D02
Pages: 3–23
DOI: 10.1520/STP46737S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-6983-8
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-6507-6