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Level II Laboratory Lubricant Analyst (ISO 18436-5)

To become certified, an individual must meet the following requirements:

  • Education and/or Experience - Candidates must have at least 24 months experience in the field of laboratory-based lubricant testing and analysis for machinery condition monitoring.  *The months of experience are based on 100 hours minimum per month of testing and analysis experience. 
  • Hold Level I Laboratory Lubricant Analyst (LLA) certification Provisional note: Candidates with at least 36 months of experience and the knowledge base of the LLA I body of knowledge need not hold level I certification to apply. 
  • Training - Candidates must have received 24 hours of documented formal training as outlined in the Body of Knowledge of the LLA II.
Note: ICML does not require, recommend, endorse or authorize any specific training course as official or approved. It is the responsibility of each candidate to research the training options available in his/her area and make a decision as to the training provider of his/her choice. ICML recommends the outline of the course of choice be compared to the exam's Body of Knowledge. It is in the person's best interest and their responsibility as an ICML candidate to ensure they are being trained in the same subject areas in which they will be tested. ICML's Bodies of Knowledge are of public domain and can be utilized by companies in the development of courses, as well as by any prospective candidate for evaluating the appropriateness of chosen training. 
  • Examination - Each candidate must successfully pass a written, 100 question, multiple-choice examination that evaluates the candidate's knowledge of the topic. Candidates have three hours to complete the closed-book examination. A score of 70% is required to pass the examination and achieve certification. Contact ICML about the availability of the exam in other languages.
The Level II LLA Body of Knowledge is an outline of concepts that one should have in order to pass the exam, in accordance with ISO 18436-5, Category II, Annex A. 

References from which exam questions were derived can be found in the Domain of Knowledge.

 I. Lubricant health monitoring (21%)
    1.  Kinematic viscosity 
    2.  Absolute (dynamic) viscosity 
    3.  Viscosity Index 
    4.  Total Acid Number 
    5.  Total Base Number 
    6.  Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) analysis 
    7.  Atomic Emission Spectroscopy 
    8.  Flash point test 
    9.  Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) 
  10. Schiff’s reagent 
  11. Crackle test
  12. Co-distillation 
  13. Karl Fischer titration 
  14. Cyclic voltammetry 
  15. Insolubles 
  16. Rotating pressure vessel oxidation test 
  17. Air release characteristics 
  18. Foam stability characteristics 
  19. Gas chromatography 
  20. Water demulsibility 
  21. Data correlation
  22. Exception testing

II. Testing for wrong or mixed lubricants (4%)
    1.  Kinematic viscosity 
    2.  Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) analysis 
    3.  Atomic Emission Spectroscopy 

III. Water contamination (11%)
     1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted water oil analysis test methods. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable 
     2. Causes of poor water demulsibility
     3. States of coexistence of water in oil
     4. Methods for assessing water contamination
        a) Crackle test
        b) FTIR analysis
        c) Co-distillation 
        d) Karl Fischer titration 
     5. Effects of water contamination on the lubricant
     6. Effects of water contamination on the machine

IV. Glycol coolant contamination (4%)
      1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted oil analysis test methods for glycol contamination. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable
      2. Elemental spectroscopy
      3. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) analysis
      4. Schiff’s reagent 
      5. GC (Gas Chromatography)
      6. Effects of glycol contamination on the lubricant
      7. Effects of glycol contamination on the machine

V. Soot contamination (4%)
     1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted oil analysis test methods for soot contamination. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable
     2. Thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) 
     3. Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) analysis
     4. Pentane Insolubles
     5. Blotter Test
     6. Effects of soot contamination on the lubricant
     7. Effects of soot contamination on the machine

VI. Fuel contamination (8%)
     1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted oil analysis test methods for fuel contamination. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable
     2. Kinematic viscosity 
     3. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) analysis
     4. Flash point test 
     5. Gas chromatography 
     6. Effects of fuel contamination on the lubricant
     7. Effects of fuel contamination on the machine

VII. Air contamination (4%)
      1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted oil analysis test methods for air contamination. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable
      2. States of coexistence of air in oil
      3. Methods for assessing air contamination
           a) Air release characteristics 
           b) Foam stability characteristics 
      3. Effects of air contamination on the lubricant
      4. Effects of air contamination on the machine

VIII. Particle contamination (6%)
       1. Scope and significance of commonly accepted oil analysis test methods for particle contamination. When to perform these and use of multiple test data to determine if results are reasonable
       2. ISO solid contamination code 
       3. Optical particle counting usage and calibration 
       4. Pore block particle counting
       5. Effects on the lubricant
       6. Effects on the machine

IX. Wear Particle Monitoring and Analysis (13%)
      A. Detecting abnormal wear
         1. Atomic emission spectroscopy methods
             a) Inductively coupled plasma (ICP) spectroscopy
             b) Arc-spark emission spectroscopy
         2. XRF spectroscopy
         3. Wear particle density measurements
      B. Wear debris analysis
         1. Ferrogram preparation
         2. Filtergram preparation
         3. Light effects
         4. Magnetism effects
         5. Heat treatment
         6. Chemical microscopy
         7. Basic morphological analysis
      C. Common wear mechanisms 
         1. Abrasive wear
             a) Two-body
             b) Three-body
         2. Surface fatigue (contact fatigue)
             a) Two-body
             b) Three-body
         3. Adhesive wear
         4. Corrosive wear
         5. Cavitation wear
      D. Size distribution of wear particles from common wear mechanisms

X. Data Interpretation (11%)
     A. Limits
        1. Understanding statistical limits (wear debris)
        2. Understanding aging limits (acid number, viscosity)
        3. Understanding targets (Water, ISO cleanliness)
        4. Establishing statistical limits
        5. Establishing aging limits
        6. Establishing goal based limits
     B. Graphical trend analysis
        1. Rate of change analysis
        2. Normalization of data
        3. Reference/baseline data comparison
        4. Effects of make-up oil
        5. Lock-step trending

XI. Quality Control (6%)
      A. Procedure writing
      B. Record management
         1. Record generation
         2. Record storage
      C. Quality control samples
         1. Types
         2. Control charts
      D. Procedures editing
      E. Audits
         1. Internal audit
         2. External audit

XII. Lubricant roles and functions (8%)
      A. Base oil
         1. Functions 
         2. Properties
      B. Additive types and functions
         1. Surface active additives and their functions
         2. Bulk oil active additives and their functions
      C. Synthetic lubricants
         1. Synthetic lubricant types
         2. Conditions dictating their use
      D. Lubrication regimes
         1. Hydrodynamic
         2. Elasto-hydrodynamic
         3. Boundary
      E. Baselining physical and chemical properties tests
      F. Identifying additive discrepancies
      G. Lubricant failure modes

 


Domain of Knowledge

  • Roylance, B. and T. Hunt (1999) Wear Debris Analysis. Coxmoor Publishing, Oxford, UK
  • Denis, J., J Briant and J. Hipeaux (1997) Lubricant Properties Analysis & Testing. Editions TECHNIP, Paris, France
  • Troyer, D. and J. Fitch (1999) Oil Analysis Basics. Noria Publishing, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
  • Hunt, T. (1993) Handbook of Wear Debris Analysis and Particle Detection in Liquids. Elsevier Science Publishers, LTD, Essex, UK
  • Toms, L. (1998) Machinery Oil Analysis. Coastal Skills Training, Virginia Beach, VA, USA
  • Fitch, E. (1992) Proactive Maintenance for Mechanical Systems. FES, Inc., Stillwater, OK, USA
  • Bloch, H. (2000) Practical Lubrication for Industrial Facilities. Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York, USA
  • Standard Practice of In-Service Monitoring of Mineral Turbine Oils for Steam and Gas Turbines, American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) D 4378-92
  • Standard Practice of In-Service Monitoring of Lubricating Oil for Auxiliary Power Plant Equipment, American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) D 6224-98
  • Prichard, E. (1995) Quality in the Analytical Chemistry Laboratory, John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, West Sussex, UK
  • Prichard, E. and Barwick, V. (2007) Quality Assurance in Analytical Chemistry, John Wiley & Sons, LGC, Teddington, UK.
  • 2001 Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Section 5, Petroleum Products.
  • Fitch, J. (2001) Sourcebook of Used Oil Elements, Noria Publishing., Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
  • Totten, G., Editor (2000) Handbook of Hydraulic Fluid Technology, Marcel Dekker, Inc., New York
  • Shugar, G. and Ballinger, J. (2011) Chemical Technicians' Ready Reference Handbook, 5th Edition, McGraw Hill Professional

These references can be purchased from the following organizations:

Amazon.Com
ASTM
Barnes and Noble
Noria Corporation