JAIC 2004, Volume 43, Number 1, Article 5 (pp. 55 to 73)
JAIC online
Journal of the American Institute for Conservation
JAIC 2004, Volume 43, Number 1, Article 5 (pp. 55 to 73)

FINDING SUBSTITUTE SURFACTANTS FOR SYNPERONIC N

JOHN A. FIELDS, ANDREW WINGHAM, FRANCES HARTOG, & VINCENT DANIELS


ABSTRACT—Environmental concerns have led to a cessation in Europe of the manufacture of the popular nonionic surfactant Synperonic N. This suspension has dealt a major blow to the conservation community, especially in the United Kingdom, where it is the primary surfactant used. A substitute was needed, and so from an initial list of 24 possible replacements, 11 were selected for testing. The critical micelle concentration for each of the 11 surfactants was determined experimentally, as it was not available from every manufacturer. By testing washing efficiency through observation of color change before and after washing, and also recording the pH and conductivity of the wash liquor, the 11 surfactants were reduced to 5. Further testing of the remaining 5 surfactants involved accelerated aging of washed textiles and measurement of the resulting color, pH, and tensile strength. Although Dehypon LS45 yielded the best cleaning properties on wool, any of the other 4 remaining surfactants (two nonionic surfactants, Synperonic 91/6 and Imbentin C135/070; and two anionic surfactants, Hostapon T and Orvus WA paste) could be used as replacements.
[Spanish Abstract] [French Abstract]

Article Sections:

1. INTRODUCTION
2. MEASUREMENT OF CRITICAL MICELLE CONCENTRATION
3. SUGDEN'S BUBBLE METHOD
4. SELECTION OF SURFACTANTS FOR TESTING
5. PHASE 1: EVALUATION OF THE SURFACTANTS
6. RESULTS FROM PHASE 1
7. CONCLUSIONS FROM PHASE 1
8. PHASE 2: FURTHER EVALUATION OF SELECTED SURFACTANTS
9. RESULTS OF PHASE 2 TESTING
10. CONCLUSIONS FROM PHASE 2
11. DISCUSSION
12. CONCLUSIONS
13. ECOLOGICAL LABELING OF SURFACTANTS
a: Appendix , Materials , References , Author Information
Entire Article

Copyright 2004 American Institution for Conservation of Historic & Artistic Works