From heavy duty lubricants to biobased fluids – legacy of Joseph Perez
Advancement in lubricant technology is driven by technical demands, oil market, innovations from related chemical areas and other conventional factors. Nevertheless, a personal impact of an individual scientist can also be very important. Few individuals can claim to have accelerated lubricant progress more than Dr. Joseph M. Perez, who initiated many new developments in lubricant technology and drove them to large scale implementation. Early in his career at PennState he worked on aerospace lubricants, developing highly efficient additives for supersonic planes. When working at Caterpillar he dealt with hydraulic fluids, gear oils and many heavy duty lubricants. During employment at NIST and upon return to PennState Dr. Perez realized the importance of vegetable oils. He pioneered many research directions for their applications, becoming directly involved in vegetable-based engine oils, hydraulic fluids, greases, biodiesel, elevator fluids and many other areas. His innovative thinking, enthusiasm and initiatives will be sorely missed by lubricant researchers.
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