The BioLoop Dispersants: A new sustainable range of dispersing agents
For many years we have been exploring the concept of engineering new surfactants using novel bio-based technologies. Sustainable products from renewable sources have been around for many years but the majority have very limited functionality in terms of performance compared to synthetic counter-types. Our remit was to develop a range of bio-based products that offer comparable performance against the synthetic products across a wide range of applications.
Dispersing agents are used extensively in the coatings industry to help disperse solid particles into a liquid medium. To produce effective dispersing agents from renewable sources is a difficult remit but our new range of products not only offer excellent sustainability but also out-perform many of the commercially available synthetic products.
Dispersing agents perform by the anchoring of the surfactant onto the particle substrate and then acting as a barrier to stop re-agglomeration of the particles. This concept is often referred to as steric stabilisation. Our products have been developed using a soya backbone which contains anchoring groups, but what makes them unique is the introduction of a hydrophilic loop that not only has an affinity for water and polar solvents but also provides both steric hindrance and stability.
Conventional dispersing agents such as “comb” dispersants have anchoring groups, but the hydrophilic groups tend to be tails. These tails have little structure and will bend and move freely in the solvent. This results in more movement of the particles which reduces the stability and results in a higher chance of flocculation and instability of the dispersion.
The BioLoop dispersants have improved stability and less chance of flocculation as the loops help to reduce the lateral movement of the particles. Also, by increasing the degree of hydrophilic saturation between the particles the chances of particle separation is greatly reduced.
We have developed three new types of dispersing agents: One that contains loops only one that has loops and tails and one that has loops, tails and strong anchoring groups.
The following diagrams depict the relative stability profiling of the different dispersing agents:
A conventional “comb” dispersant
This type of dispersing agent is more susceptible to floculation and also doesnt have the same degree of stability and rheology control
A BioLoop dispersant
Lansperse BIO868 is an 100% bio-based dispersing agent for Inorganic powders and Titanium Dioxide
A BioLoop with tails dispersant
Lansperse LT87 is a powerful dispersing agent for Organic Pigments