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Exxal™ alcohols can meet all of your performance demands

Performance properties you want

In today’s industry, the wide range of production processes and applications all have a unique set of challenges. These challenges require you to choose an alcohol that is most suitable for your ethoxylation process and specific needs. The advanced performance properties of Exxal™ branched alcohols can offer benefits in your surfactant applications.

 

Upgrade and streamline your industrial processes

The right choice of alcohol in your formulation can potentially improve your industrial surfactant performance. Discover the benefits of Exxal branched alcohols and how they can improve processing performance. The chart below shows performance of ethoxylated Exxal 13 compared to linear alcohol ethoxylate with the same degree of ethoxylation and comparable HLB (Hydrophile-Lipophile Balance).

Key benefits of branched alcohol ethoxylates

 

ExxonMobil data

Exxal 13/8EO
Linear C12-C14/8EO
 

 

Test methods
!
Property Units Method Principle
Cloud point in water °C CI-TM1 Visual
Surface tension lowering
(maximum)
mN/m CI-TM8 Du Noüy ring
Occurence of gel phase
at defined concentration
and temperature
wt%
surfactant
CI-TM5 Rheometry
Wetting time in water seconds CI-TM3 Draves test (cotton skein,
based on AATCC method)
Foam height mm CI-TM6 Dynamic foam analyser
Time to reach 40mN/m
(20°C, 0.1 g/l in ,water)
ms CI-TM7 Dynamic surface tension,
maximum bubble pressure
Note CI-TM refer to ExxonMobil methods

 

Effectiveness

A surfactant lowers the surface tension of water or the interfacial tension between water and organic liquids by adsorbing at the interface. Surfactant effectiveness is quantified by the lowest surface tension achievable, i.e. the surface tension at and beyond the CMC (Critical Micelle Concentration). Surface tension is measured by classical methods such as the Du Noüy ring. Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates typically provide lower minimum surface tension values, but higher CMCs than the linear equivalents.

 

Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates provide lower minimum surface tension than linear alcohols

 

ExxonMobil data

Exxal 13/8EO
Linear C12-C14/8EO
CMC
Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates are effective surfactants and can help to reach lower minimum surface tension in water solutions.

Dynamic surface tension

The rate at which equilibrium surface tension is reached is also very important for a number of high-speed industrial processes. Typically, this can be expressed by the time required to reach a defined equilibrium surface tension (here 40 mN/m) for a fixed surfactant concentration (here 0.1 g/L) in water at 20°C. Branched alcohol ethoxylates need the least amount of time to reach the desired surface tension. Dynamic surface tension is measured by maximum bubble pressure.

Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates reach the desired surface tension faster

ExxonMobil data

Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates need less time to reach the desired surface tension than linear based ethoxylates.

Foaming

Foaming is a typical effect of surfactant solutions. It may or may not be desired, depending on the end-use. While the initial foam height is relatively similar for all branched ethoxylates, branched alcohols tend to have lower foam stability, which is generally an advantage in industrial surfactants. In the test, foam is generated by a gas flow under controlled conditions.

 

 Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates have lower foam stability over time, an advantage in industrial applications

 

ExxonMobil data

Exxal 13/8EO
Linear C12-C14/8EO
Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates tend to have lower foam stability, which is generally an advantage in industrial surfactants.

Rate of wetting

Wetting of surfaces is essential for many surfactant applications. The rate of wetting can impact the efficiency of your process, both in speed and evenness of application. It refers to the time required to wet a standard cotton skein by a 1g/L surfactant solution (Draves test). There is a significant performance advantage for Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates in industrial surfactants. Wetting time is significantly reduced from 12 to 4 seconds: 3 times lower than comparable linear alcohol ethoxylates. This results in lower processing times in applications like fast textile processing. Similarly, wetting performance leads to advantages in crop applications when active ingredients need to be quickly applied on surfaces.

 

The rate of wetting is measured by the Draves test.

The wetting time of ethoxylates based on Exxal branched alcohols is significantly lower than comparable linear alcohol based ethoxylates.

Gel phase formation

Gel phases make product handling more difficult and are generally avoided in industrial applications. Exxal branched alcohol ethoxylates tend to form fewer gel phases in water solutions than linear alcohols of comparable molecular weight. Due to this, solutions using Exxal based ethoxylates remain fluid, providing an important performance advantage for formulators or end users by improving product handling ability.

Exxal alcohol ethoxylates remain more liquid in water solutions than linear alcohols

 

Exxal™ alcohols ethoxylates remain liquid in 50/50 wt% surfactant/water mixtures.

ExxonMobil data

Exxal 13/8EO
Linear C12-C14/8EO
Semi-linear C9-C11/8EO
Ethoxylates based on Exxal branched alcohols tend to form fewer gel phases than linear ethoxylates.

What are the advantages for your specific applications?

Whether your business is focused on textile, agricultural, personal care or detergents, you need surfactants that meet the specific needs of your customers and their end users. Exxal branched alcohols can provide a benefit to address those needs in many different surfactant applications.

Select your industry to get an overview of the benefits Exxal branched alcohols can have for your formulations.