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Alan Eachus

Contributor II
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Eachus_Alan.jpgDr. Alan C. Eachus, a retiree from The Dow Chemical Company with 36 years of service, is currently an independent consultant and freelance technical writer. The majority of his professional career was spent at ANGUS Chemical Company and its corporate predecessors in technical-service positions, prior to its acquisition by Dow. He has more than thirty years of technical-support experience in nitroparaffin-related technology and antimicrobial-chemistry applications. He has spoken at technical-society meetings, conferences and symposia worldwide, and has authored or co-authored numerous publications on lubricants, microbiology and other technical topics in U.S., European and Asian technical and trade journals. He also retired as a Colonel, Ordnance Corps, from the U.S Army Reserve.

Dr. Eachus earned a B.S. in chemistry from Syracuse University, a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry at Syracuse, and an M.B.A. in marketing and finance from the Northwestern University Graduate School of Management in Chicago.

His professional memberships include the American Chemical Society (Fifty-Year/ Emeritus Member), the Society for Industrial Microbiology (Emeritus Member), the American Society for Testing and Materials, the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (Life Member), and the New York Academy of Sciences. He is an adjunct instructor in the SME/STLE Metalworking Fluids Certificate course and is a Certified Metalworking-Fluid Specialist.

Dr. Eachus also provides technical-topic narration and voiceovers for audio spots, training tapes and commercial messages.


Metalworking Fluids—Functional Chemistry, Dysfunctional Microbiology

Description: Metalworking fluids are sprayed over the interface between a metal part being formed, such as drawing a wire from stock, or being shaped by cutting or grinding. They are used to provide cooling and lubrication to the process, so that excessive heat from friction doesn’t damage precision tooling, and that metal surfaces aren’t blemished. These fluids must also prevent corrosion of freshly-exposed metal surfaces. Their tasks must be performed in a wide variety of situations, which requires the careful selection of fluid components in order to effectively perform the required functions while not causing unwanted effects. However, the combination of water (for cooling) and organic-chemical fluid ingredients, used for long periods of time under the less-than-sanitary conditions of machine shops, can permit the introduction and proliferation of bacteria and/or fungi in the fluid circulation system. Such microbial growth, if left unchecked, can lead to chemical decomposition of some fluid components and consequent fluid failure, as well as to potential health issues for exposed workers.

Polymerized, Extracted, Reassembled—The Evolution Of Greener Lubricants

Whether impelled by profit, legislation or altruism, lubricants which are considered to be less environmentally-damaging than their predecessors continue to increase in use. While these products generally demonstrate improved biodegradability, lowered ecotoxicity and/or are based largely on renewable ingredients, there is not yet complete agreement as to the criteria for such designation, nor regarding test procedures and resultant data needed for inclusion in this category. While various base fluids have received the most scrutiny, as alternatives to mineral oil, appropriate additive packages must be developed for each lubrication situation, as well. Advances in this field continue to be made, based on a variety of factors. The most-challenging lubrication environment is found inside an engine crankcase, but this also provides unique opportunities for indirect lubrication “greenness.” By far the greatest impediment to more widespread utilization of environmentally-benign lubricants is their significantly higher cost compared to conventional ones. This disadvantage is expected to gradually lessen, due to continuing pressure from the combination of technology advances, legislative mandates and tax incentives, coupled with the spectre of uncertainty in crude-oil costs and perceived availability.


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