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Screening of volatile compounds in washing water and cloths from the sponge cloth process
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology.
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology.
2010 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Freudenberg Household Products AB in Norrköping are manufacturer of sponge cloths with the well-known brand names of Wettex® and Vileda®. The production is based on the viscose fiber process and involves a high chemical demand. Recent customer complaints involve a diffuse smell from the cloths that is like a “garage odor” and occurs after a few uses. The company’s theory is that the smell derives from a chemical used in the process called Exxal 9.

The aim was to screen the washing water from two sections and the cloth before and after wash for the presence of Exxal 9 and other prominent components. The washing water samples consisted of a salt solution from one section and a water condensate from another section. A method to qualitatively and quantitatively examine the production samples was developed. To evaluate the variation over a short period of time, twelve samples were taken during four weeks. The focus for the analysis lay on production line Wx4, but comparisons with two other production lines, Wx7 and SL1, were also made. The method of choice was gas chromatography in combination with two different detectors; mass spectrometer for identification and flame ionization detector for quantification.

Exxal 9 could be identified in both of the washing water sections but in very various concentrations. At the production line Wx4, the mean concentration in the mother lye was 61.96 µl/l whereas the mean concentration in the condensate was 0.24 µl/l. The comparison between the different production lines showed significant variations, where Wx4 had the highest concentration. In the cloths, Exxal 9 could only be found before it had been washed. The concentration in the cloths was not high enough for quantification. In both the washing waters and cloths, additional unknown peaks were found. Attempts to identify all the unknowns were made but only two compounds were included in the commercial library; 2-ethyl-1-hexanol and 2-(2-butoxyethoxy)-ethanol.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 45 p.
Keyword [en]
Cellulose, viscose, Exxal 9, sponge cloth, liquid-liquid extraction, nitrogen evaporation, gas chromatography, flame ionization detector, mass spectrometer
National Category
Other Chemistry Topics
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-57114ISRN: LITH-IFM-G-EX--10/2246--SEOAI: diva2:325736
Subject / course
Chemical Engineering
Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics
Available from: 2010-06-21 Created: 2010-06-10 Last updated: 2011-10-20Bibliographically approved

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