Recorded Thursday, March 29 – Presented by Evonik Industries
Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) regulations are becoming increasingly more stringent due to their effect on the ground-level ozone and other public health concerns. As consumers demand safer product profiles, formulators need to adjust their current and future product formulations to meet ever changing regulations.
This webinar will discuss the challenges of replacing solvents within cleaning formulations and present some solutions to these challenges. One solution that will be highlighted – TomaKleen® G-12 surfactant – enables formulators to develop next-generation cleaning systems. TomaKleen G-12 surfactant is a water-soluble additive that not only enables reduction or replacement of glycol ethers and other oxygenated solvents, but increases the speed and performance of soil removal in laundry and hard-surface cleaning. TomaKleen G-12 works with your base surfactant system to boost detergency and reduce or eliminate the need for solvents, thus reducing VOCs, and improving the environmental profile and cleaning performance of your overall formulation.
Download the slides (for Prospector Members only) | Webinar Transcript
Let’s talk about…first though, what is a solvent? You know, those of us that typically formulate cleaners for the HI&I market have very specific ideas as to what we mean by solvent. But my idea may not be exactly the same as yours. So what we’re going to be talking about today are specifically the organic solvents that fall under the polar or the nonpolar category.
Under the polar or the more water soluble solvents, we’ve got things like the Pyrrolidones, shorter alcohols like isopropanol, and ethers such as 2-butoxyethanol or ethylene glycol monobutyl ether, which is another term for it. Under the nonpolar, we have thing [inaudible 00:02:10]. These typically go into hard surface cleaners in a small to large amount, depending on what exactly is the goal of the cleaner. If you remember, I think I use the same slide the last webinar that I gave, in which we talked about how you go about putting together materials for a typical hard surface cleaner. And you can see that solvent is almost always present. And it is there because a lot of times it helps out to speed the dissolution of soils and the drying of surfaces and generally give us synergism to the surfactant performance.
The problems however are that a lot of times they’re volatile. And VOCs are being clamped down on in areas such as California, the OTC states, where they see them as a contributor…well, they are a contributor…to ozone. There are often toxicity concerns. The odor can be offensive, but, really, the biggest thing that we have is public perception. Public perception is what drives a lot of what we do. And in fact, I selected these pictures on the right side of your screen to kind of show…you know, and these are actually rather attractive pictures showing the industry and nature coming together I think. Nonetheless, there’s an undercurrent of, “Oh my gosh, there must be some danger there.” And so when someone says, “I’m using a solvent in a product,” the public thought is, “We need to get rid of that.”
Now, solvents that are often used in HI&I cleaners can bring some problems with them. And in fact, I’ve pointed out some of the problems for some things that are typically used in the HI&I hard surface cleaners. You’ll notice there’s one that doesn’t seem to have a whole lot of a problem there, but everything else does bring some problem to the table. And we’ll touch on that one…its shorthand is TPM, and you’ll see there’s no check marks for it, and it has its own problem in that it just doesn’t work particularly well.
Now, why do we like solvents? Well, we like them because they speed drying, they aid in removing water-insoluble soils such as heavy greases and things like that, and they can help to lower the surface tension by taking up room at the interface where the surfactants sit.
There’s a little bit more though that they do, such as lowering the surfactant contribution to micellar mass, they speed surface exchange, and these are kind of thermodynamic things that are going on behind the scenes that really impact how well our cleaners work. And the bottom line of it is that it helps things to clean. So the way that we look at this a lot of times is, what can we do to mimic these types of effects so that we get better impacts in cleaning without the solvent contribution?
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