battling pollution

How Exxal™ branched alcohols can help in the fight against foam in India

By their very nature, surfactants are designed to foam. Everyone likes to see foam when they clean, but when you rinse it down the drain, you want it to disappear fast. Once down the drain, surfactants should ideally pass through a water treatment facility before disappearing into the natural environment.
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What happens when a water treatment system is bypassed

Extreme cases of this have recently been documented in India and demonstrate how when surfactant disposal bypasses a water treatment system, it can run through a repetitive cycle of ‘foam-build-collapse’ until it dissipates and biodegrades.

Impacts of foam in India

Certain regions in India are finding their rivers and lakes to be frequently covered with foam.  Not only is this an unusual sight but it can be confusing to people who want to understand the environmental and health impacts.  While more studies are needed to understand the impacts of this persistent foaming, it is clear that both small and large actions are needed to return Indian waterways back to their natural state.
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Consider Exxal™ branched alcohols as part of your formulation

While the authorities grapple with these issues and consider regulatory action, it is possible to make simple changes to your surfactant formulation.

Using advanced chemicals such as Exxal™ branched alcohols as a part of your biodegradable surfactant formulation may help address some of the issues noted above.

  • Ethoxylates of Exxal™ branched alcohols have been shown to provide faster foam collapse compared to other alcohol ethoxylates. 
  • A wide range of Exxal™ branched alcohol ethoxylates meet the stringent ready biodegradability criteria per the OECD 301F test standard. 
  • Exxal™ branched alcohol ethoxylates have also been tested to be inherently less toxic to aquatic life than many alternative surfactant. 1 2 3.

Using Exxal™ branched alcohols in formulations can offer high-performance, low-foam surfactants that meet biodegradability criteria, eliminating the need for compromise.

Learn more at Surfactants: Why compromise?

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Additional resources

  • Surfactants, why compromise?

    The surfactant industry faces the challenge of delivering a biodegradable product that meets performance requirements. Many in the industry hold the misconception that there is a trade-off between biodegradability and performance.

    With our line of Exxal™ branched alcohols we have an effective solution that challenges this misconception. A solution that helps your customer meet their performance and environmental needs.

    Learn more
  • conference attendee

    2nd ICIS India Surfactants Conference

    Oct. 11-12, 2018. Find out about the opportunities for and implications of changes occurring in the sector that will put you a step ahead of your competitors.

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  • clean water branched alcohols

    Branched alcohols

    Exxal™ branched alcohols are branched primary alcohols used to synthesize surfactants, polymer additives, lube and fuel additives, adhesives, and other industrial products.

    Learn more

[1] Dorn, P.B., Salanitro, J.P., Evans, S.H., and Kravetz, L. Assessing the aquatic hazard of some branched and linear nonionic surfactants by biodegradation and toxicity. United States: N. p., 1993. Web. doi:10.1002/etc.5620121002.

[2] Kravetz, L., Salanitro, J.P., Dorn, P.B. and Guin, K. F. influence of Hydrophobe Type and Extent of Branching on Environmental Response Factors of Nonionic Surfactants. JAOCS, Vol. 68. No. 8 Chemistry. 1999.

[3] Zoller, U. (2004). Handbook of Detergents, Part B. Boca Raton: CRC Press. 

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