Tuesday, August 19, 2008

An ideal biocide - is there any?

What should an ideal biocide be like?

* effective against a variety of microbial species
* effective in different process environments (temperature, pH, RO potential, solid concentrations etc.)
* both fast and conserving type of action
* not harmful for employers of paper machine
* not harmful for paper machine
* not harmful for products of the paper machine
* not harmful for environment
* (something else?)

As far as IM knows, no such ideal biocide has been developed yet. "Tailored" biocide products shall therefore be combined to fight against raw material contamination, microbial activity in large process water and pulp systems, fiofilm producers...

The rapid development of fast-acting oxidative agents (chlorine-and bromine-based compounds, PAA, ClO2 and even O3) is very promising, but they have relatively limited success as storing agents. Their broad-spectrum influence on even bacterial spores should be taken into account
when planning biocide programs, which also should contain compounds to prevent biodegradation during storage periods and formation of biofilms on wet surfaces of the machine.

In some cases, activity of alternative biocides against certain hazardous bacteria are also worth to evaluate.