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Biological Surface-Active Substance


Development of biological preparation with surfactant activity

Tech Area / Field

  • BIO-REM/Bioremediation/Biotechnology
  • BIO-MIB/Microbiology/Biotechnology
  • BIO-DIV/Biodiversity/Biotechnology
  • BIO-IND/Industrial Biotechnology/Biotechnology
  • ENV-WPC/Water Pollution and Control/Environment

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
MISIS (Steel and Alloys), Russia, Moscow

Supporting institutes

  • Institute of Aviation Materials, Russia, Moscow\nState Scientific Center of Genetics and Selection of Industrial Microorganisms (GosNIIGenetica), Russia, Moscow


  • Gewesa GmbH, Germany, Quickborn

Project summary

The basis of an essence of a decided problem

Wide application of synthetic surface-active substances or SAC has made revolution in many areas of industries and manufactures. Now manufacture of chemical SAC in Russia reaches 4-5 kg one year per capita and tends to increase. Approximately 50 % of synthesized SAC are used for the household purposes (washing and cleaning substances, cosmetics, medicine and pharmacology, the food-processing industry and plant protection, inhibition of corrosion, etc.). A special place occupy SAC in the oil-and-gas industry – extraction, transportation, improvement of quality and properties of fractions of oil, etc. However synthetic SAC except for obvious advantages have a number of serious disadvantages:

  1. toxicity and allergenicity;
  2. do not destroy in an environment (are ecologically dangerous);
  3. can be applied in strictly certain intervals of temperatures and concentration of mineral salts and рН.
  4. synthesis of chemical SAC is multi stages and not cheep.

In this connection there is an interest to alternative natural SAC which synthesis is carried out by a number of bacteria. Found out biological SAC of a bacterial origin do not yield on the main technical parameters of chemical analogues and have a number of advantages: bacteria - producers of SAC are not toxic and do not cause an allergy in the persone, animals, birds, fishes and plants; destroy in an environment and can be used in various conditions. Production of bio SAC is relative cheap because the cultivation of bacteria need the cheep components of fermentation media, and absence of necessity of clearing of SAC. Bio SAC can be used in various forms (cultural liquid, containing SAC, paste, gel, a dry powder, depending on sphere of the application. Now in the world a number of bacterial SAC which are synthesized by cultures Bacillus subtilis (surfactin), Bac. licheniformis (lihensin), Pseudomonas fluorescens (visconsin), Acinetobacter calcoaceticus (emulsan) are described and patented..

Availability of a decided problem is provided with bacterial production of highly active and stable SAC on cheap cultural media for bacterial fermentation. As products of ability to live of bacteria - producers of SAC are not alien for soil and are not toxic for plant and animal, there is a high potential opportunity of replacement chemical surface-active substances by biological SAC.

Now GosNIIgenetica have the collection bacterial strains of various taxonomic groups isolated from various sources. This is permit to make wide screening of bacterial producers bio SAC, distinguished by high activity and an opportunity of their use in various areas and conditions. Institutes MISiS and VIAM possess experts, the equipment, an operational experience study of washing properties of SAC and the characterization of anticorrosive properties.

Ecological and economic aspects of a problem

Now the principal tendency of production of biotechnological products is use ecologically safe bacterial metabolites. In this plan replacement of chemical SAC comparable on efficiency of bioSAC is rather actual. Chemical SAC possess a number of large shortcomings, it is especial their stability in an environment, not safety for warm-blooded animals and ability to environmental contamination. Besides cost of synthesis of chemical surface-active compounds is high that results in search of less dangerous and cheaper biological SAC.

The economic aspect of application of biological SAC, basically, can be connected to a problem of reduction of material losses from corrosion.

Ways of the decision of a problem

The above-named problem can be solved with use ecologically safe the biological SAC produced bacteria which earlier isolated us from natural sources. Today in Russia there is no industrial production of biological preparations of surface-active substances. However, there is a network of microbiological factories which can be adapted for production of biological SAC. In this plan and creation of such preparation (it is possible multipurpose action) and the organization of his manufacture are represented by an actual and feasible task.

The project will be carried out in GosNIIgenetica, possessing experience in the field of development of strains- producers of biologically active substances and preparations on their basis and Institute MISiS and VIAM which have experience to study anticorrosion activity, washing and cleaning of metals and alloys.

GosNIIgenetica has a collection of microorganisms among which have been revealed strains synthesizing a different kind of biologically active substances (insecticidal toxins, fungicides, antibiotics, etc.). In Institute some strains producing SAC are isolated and preliminary tested on various technical parameters. Methods of an estimation of technical parameters of SAC (ability to emulsification of various oils, the superficial tension, washing properties) are fulfilled. Results of preliminary tests of the selected strains-producers of surface-active substances in laboratory conditions have shown their high activity. The institute possesses the equipment for carrying out investigations in the field of development of biological SAC with characteristics comparable or exceeding synthetic analogues.

Tests of corrosion and washing ability will be carried out in MISiS and VIAM. Corrosive attack of bioSAC will be will be carried out on metals, alloys, both metal and nonmetallic coverings. It is planned to use various techniques of tests full immersing in washing liquid, influence on slot-hole corrosion, influence on contact corrosion, studying to disposition of corrosion bursting. The degree of corrosive attack will be determined by the following criteria:

  • visual investigation,
  • change of weight,
  • character and depth of corrosion damages.

Washing properties of bioSAC will be determined by criteria:
  • change of parameters of superficial potential,
  • degreasing ability (by gravimeter method).

The purposes and tasks of the project

The purpose of the given project is development and release of an experimental party of ecologically safe biological SAC.

During realization of the project it is planned:

  • To develop methods of isolation and fast screening strains- producers of bioSAC
  • To study dynamics and optimal conditions of biosynthesis of SAC (time, cultural media for fermentation, temperature);
  • To check up stability of the SAC (time, temperature of storage, formulation);
  • To develop technology of production of SAC in optimal form.
  • To carry out laboratory researches;
  • To study of toxicology profile,
  • To develop the trial rules of manufacture of a preparation;
  • To organize production of an experimental party of bioSAC and testing
  • To create washing-up liquid on the basis of bioSAC and various functional groups and to estimate technical characteristics.

The importance of realization of the project.

Development of bioSAC will allow to lower considerably economic and ecological damage from application of chemical SAC. Biological SAC in the near future completely will not replace chemical, however, they can be a component of the integrated system of protection against material and ecological losses.

Realization of the given project will allow:

  • to create ecologically safe biological SAC for gradual replacement chemical;
  • to receive economic benefit and ecological benefit, it is especial at use as inhibitor of corrosion;
  • to lower norms of use of chemical SAC.
  • to create a detergent on the basis of bioSAC, reducing the price and reducing ecological pressure upon an environment.

Ecological safety.

Microorganisms used as producers will pass check on pathogenicity, allergenicity and other sanitary-and-hygienic parameters. In manufacture the certificated strain-producer will be used only. At production of bioSAC only non-polluting compounds will be used as components of a nutrient medium The preparation will be safe for the human and warm-blooded organisms, will not render a negative effect on the plants, benefit insects and fishes.

The main expected results

  1. The method of producing biological surface-active substances (SAC) will be developed.
  2. Biological SAC -based preparation will be developed as the washing and anticorrosive agent.
  3. Application of biological preparation will raise ecological safety at use in a wide range (from industrial application up to household), as result of the following circumstances: a) it will not possess toxicity and allergenicity; b) it will not possess corrosive activity, c) it will not accumulate in an environment that will exclude an opportunity of pollution.
  4. Development of the washing-up preparation containing as active factors biological SAC and functional additive components, will allow to increase technological characteristics and to lower norms of the consumption of chemical SAC in 3-5 times.
  5. Expected economic efficiency of using the biological SAC in private life and the industry will permit to cut expenses in 2-3 times of consumers in comparison with chemical SAC.
  6. The organization of own manufacture of bioSAC- preparation or sale of the license is possible.

The main stages of implementation of the project

Development of the methods of isolation and fast screening of strains- producers of bioSAC

Research of dynamics and optimum conditions of SAC biosynthesis (time of cultivation, cultural media, temperature of cultivation);

Development of technology of bioSAC production in optimal preparative form

Checking up the stability of SAC factor (time of keeping, temperature of storage for various preparation forms);

The laboratory testing detergent, anticorrosive, and emulsifying characteristics of bioSAC

Estimation of bioSAC efficiency in various conditions of its application (temperature, salinity, рН)

Toxicology and hygienic estimation of bioSAC preparation

Organization of production of an experimental party of bioSAC and its testing

Carrying out of a toxicological estimation of the producer strain and preparative form.

Development of the technological regulations.

Manufacturing of experimental party of the developed preparation on the base of bioSAC and functional additives

The project is directed to achieving “peaceful” purposes according to aims and tasks of ISTC.