Shell creates premium motor oil from natural gas


1L_Helix_Ultra_5W_40Amsterdam: Last week Shell Lubricants announced the worldwide launch of a next generation motor oil, Shell Helix Ultra with Shell PurePlus Technology – the company’s most advanced motor oil ever, featuring a base oil designed from natural gas. Pioneering an entirely new way to produce premium motor oils, Shell Helix Ultra uses a revolutionary gas-to-liquid (GTL) process to design pure, synthetic base oil which delivers higher levels of cleansing and protection.

Shell PurePlus Technology converts natural gas into a crystal-clear base oil with virtually none of the impurities found in crude oil for use in premium, synthetic lubricants. Base oils are the main component of finished motor oils, making up on average 75-90% of the end product. This next generation base oil is then enhanced with Shell’s unique additive ingredients to create the company’s most advanced fully synthetic motor oil ever; Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology.

Selda Gunsel, Vice President of Downstream Global Commercial Technology
Selda Gunsel, Vice President of Downstream Global Commercial Technology

Speaking at the global launch event at the Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam – where the revolutionary Shell PurePlus Technology is designed, Selda Gunsel, Vice President of Downstream Global Commercial Technology at Shell said: “Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology represents a huge step forward. The way motor oils are produced has not changed for decades – now, we have unveiled a new motor oil that surpasses our previous lubricant technology, which is why we are confident when we say that no other engine oil keeps your engine closer to factory clean. Shell Helix Ultra with revolutionary PurePlus Technology harnesses the power of gas to produce the next generation motor oils, bringing together over 40 years of research and development in one new oil.”

Shell PurePlus Technology allows Shell to design the molecules that go into the motor oil, using chemical engineering to manufacture long chains of carbon molecules that are the ideal starting point to create pure, clean base oils. Because the base oil has been produced from natural gas at a molecular level it is a significantly more stable product than conventional base oils, which gives the finished motor oil lower volatility and better low-temperature flow properties. Shell PurePlus Technology base oils have consistently lower viscosity at cold temperatures (-25 to -40C) so they start lubricating your engine straight away from a cold start. These properties translate into important performance benefits for the engine, including improved cleaning, wear protection, and fuel economy.


“Starting with natural gas, Shell scientists are able to engineer the molecules to create a base oil with specific properties and characteristics. When this base oil is then combined with the carefully crafted additive package, it creates superior motor oils that offer a level of cleaning and protection not possible with lesser base oils,” said Robert Sutherland, Shell Helix Global Technology Manager. “Shell PurePlus Technology has also paved the way for the next generation of motor oils by offering possibilities for new viscosity grades. So far, this has enabled us to create the Shell Helix Ultra 0W-range, and we are already working on future developments.”
Shell_Helix_Ultra_PurePlus_P_colour_2014Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology is designed to meet the needs of the latest engines. The range combines Shell PurePlus Technology with Active Cleansing Technology to deliver higher levels of protection against build-up of engine deposits and unsurpassed sludge protection. The product also provides superior wear and corrosion protection which can help to extend engine life and reduce maintenance costs. Fuel economy benefits vary with viscosity grade, but certain products within the Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology range can deliver an improvement of up to 3% in fuel economy.

Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology meets the most modern industry specifications and has received approvals from leading vehicle and engine manufacturers across the world.
Shell PurePlus Technology base oils are produced at the Pearl GTL plant in Qatar; a partnership between Shell and Qatar Petroleum. This facility is the world’s largest gas-to-liquids facility, and can produce approximately one million tonnes of base oils per year.

The new Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus Technology range is currently being rolled out to markets worldwide.

Source: Shell International Ltd.

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