Synonyms: Alfa olefin sulfonate, Sodium alpha olefin sulphonate, Sulphonic acid C12-C14-C16 Alkane hydroxy and C12-C14-C16 Alkene hydroxyl sodium salts,
Britens AOS is a strong anionic surfactant. In cleaning formulations, it are the surfactants which do the actual cleaning job. Britens AOS is the readily biodegradable countertype to the more widely used, only slowly degradable Britens ABS; the sodium salt of of LABSA (Linear Alkyl Benzene Sulphonic Acid). Readily degradable non-ionic surfactants are represented by our Britens APG series.
AOS surfactants have been commercially available in the United States since 1965. They have been formulated into a variety of detergents such as toilet cleaners and shampoo products. AOS surfactants are often selected as replacements for linear alkylbenzene sulfonates, due to their biodegradation, foaming, detergency, and mildness properties.
AOS products identified above are linear in structure, with carbon chain lengths ranging from C12 to C18.
Published information on AOS surfactants shows that primary biodegradation of these compounds can reach 100% in 3 to 5 days under laboratory conditions. AOS surfactants have also been found to undergo extensive biodegradation when tested by strict European Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) methods (301 B,C,D). Ultimate biodegradation of AOS in excess of 100% has been reported to occur within 30 days in Closed Bottle/BOD tests. OECD Modified Sturm OECD 301 B shows AOS to be “readily biodegradable”.
Several studies have investigated the fate of AOS compounds under actual environmental conditions. In a one year sewage treatment plant study, performed by Sekiguchi, Oba, et al., the average level of AOS in the plant’s incoming waste stream was determined to be approximately 2%. Methylene blue active/substances (MBAS) and Infrared Spectroscopy (IR) analyses of the water following activated sludge treatment showed that AOS had been completely removed. The findings of this study and the numerous laboratory studies which have been performed over the years show that AOS surfactants are environmentally compatible.