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Phosphate Esters for Metal Working

Updated: Sep 9, 2022

Phosphate esters find application in the formulation of metal working as versatile multipurpose additives. The capability to modify their characteristics by selecting the optimum hydrophobe, ethylene oxide content and monoester to diester ratio allow products with the optimum surface-active properties to be provided for a wide range of metalworking fluid applications.


Monoester Diester

R = Alkyl (C8 – C18) or Aryl n = 0 to 6 (typically)



The key characteristics are:

• Emulsification • Lubrication / Extreme pressure additive • Corrosion inhibition • Low foaming • Detergency • Hydrotropes


These characteristics can be optimized for use in the formulation of a wide range of metal working products, including:

• Neat oils • Soluble oils • Semisynthetic MWF • Synthetic MWF • Metal cleaning formulation


Typical products used in the formulation of metal working fluids include:

Lanphos PE74 - Oil-soluble phosphate ester is a highly effective emulsifier that provides excellent lubrication in oil and water-based systems. Also, it imparts good anti-corrosion properties and low foaming characteristics to water-based lubricant systems. Lanphos PE74 can best be used in the formulation of soluble oils and semi-synthetic metal working fluids but can also find uses in neat oils.

Lanphos TEP4 – Water-soluble phosphate ester is a highly effective lubricant for water-based systems, imparting good anti-corrosion properties and low foaming characteristics to water-based lubricant systems. Lanphos TEP4 can be used in the formulation of synthetic metal working fluids. Also, it provides hydrotrope properties and can be used in the formulation of highly built metal cleaning products.

Lanphos PE35 – Oil-soluble phosphate ester with moderate water solubility and good emulsification characteristics that provides good lubrication in oil and water-based systems. Also, it imparts good anti-corrosion properties and low foaming characteristics to water-based lubricant systems. Lanphos PE35 can best be used in the formulation of soluble oils and semi-synthetic and synthetic metal working fluids, particularly for aluminium cutting and forming fluids. Lanphos PE35 can also be used in the formulation of highly built metal cleaning products often, in combination with Lanphos TEP4.



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