Technical terms explained

Index:


Glossary: Biological degreration
Biodegradation describes the splitting of detergents in the sewage treatment plant into fragments that no longer lather. The formation of huge mountains of foam on the inland waters in the sixties led the legislature to prescribe a minimum value of 80% for biodegradation. Now this figure has been raised to 90%. All the surfactants used in conventional detergents and cleaning agents exceed this requirement. Advertising slogans like "up to 99% biodegradable" give little indication of whether a product meets the environmental requirements. Questions like the following are more crucial than the question "When does a surfactant stop lathering?":

  • What substances are released on degradation?
  • What remains at the end?
  • Where does the degradation take place?

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Glossary: APG (Alkylpolyglucoside)
This group of detergents is also known as sugar surfactants. Vegetable oils such as coconut oil and sugar or starch are used in their preparation. Their degradation is clear and is regarded as unproblematic. APGs can be used whereever soaps are ill-suited as washing agents. However, like FAS, they fall short of the ecological characteristics of soap.

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Glossary: Essential oils
essential oils (for example, lavender oil and orange peel oil) give our products a pleasant fragrance. However, they are not entirely uncontroversial regarding skin problems. For this reason, our products are also optionally available without essential oils.

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Glossary: Alcohol
Alcohol (ethanol) is used to adjust the viscosity of a product. For technical purposes, alcohol must be denatured so as to render it unfit for human consumption. Conventionally, alcohol is denatured with petro-chemicals (such as methylethylketone or pyridine). In our products, we only use alcohol which has been denatured with substances that are components of the detergent (caustic potash and castor oil).

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Glossary: Ethylene oxide
Ethylene oxide is the base chemical for manufacturing a wide range of detergents, such as FAO (Fatty alcohol oxethylate). Ethylene oxide is a product of the petrochemical industry. It is extremely toxic and also carcinogenic. Therefore, no ingredients are used in our products, which are manufactured using this substance.

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Glossary: FAS (Fatty alcohol sulfate)
Washing agent of plant origin. It is usually produced from coconut oil, which is then converted into one of the corresponding fatty alcohols. The final surfactant results from the treatment with sulphur trioxide and subsequent neutralization with sodium hydroxide. The reduction of FAS is considered to be clear. However, FAS retains its cleaning power longer than soaps in waste water Also, the reduction itself takes place primarily in water and not in the sludge. For this reason, we use FAS only wherever soaps are unsuitable.

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Glossary: Stone dust
We use a chalky stone dust as cleaning agent in our scouring powder. It is characterised by its fineness. Even sensitive surfaces are not scratched.

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Glossary: Pottasium carbonate (Potash)
Potassium carbonate was formerly obtained from wood ash in densely wooded areas. The ash would be depleted, vapourised and annealed in wooden barrels (pots). Today, potassium carbonate is mainly obtained from caustic potash. For this, the caustic potash is charged with carbon dioxide. Potassium carbonate is added to our soap cleaners to stabilize the alkalinity.

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Glossary: Coconut oil
Coconut oil is an important raw material for many detergents. In large systems, coconut oil is usually reduced in several steps to fatty alcohols, which are then converted to the actual surfactants. During this process, often petrochemical substances get bound to the fatty alcohol. During the manufacture of SODASAN soaps, coconut oil from organic and fair trade projects is converted directly with lye into liquid soap in a low-temperature process.

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Glossary: Preservatives
"Preservatives are generally not used in our products. We also strictly ensure that the raw materials purchased by us are free of preservatives.

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Glossary: Lecithin
Lecithin is a naturally occurring emulsifier that can be found in milk, egg yolks, soybeans, etc. It serves as a care component in our wool detergents.

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Glossary: Sodium metasilicate
Text is missing!

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Glossary: Sodium percarbonate
Sodium percarbonate as a bleaching additive is the ecological alternative to sodium perborate, which is widely used in conventional products. Sodium percarbonate releases oxygen during the wash cycle which oxidises the bleachable stains (e.g. red wine) and thus removes them. Unlike sodium perborate, sodium percarbonate is not toxic to plants. However, it is an irritant because of its alkalinity and should be kept away from children.

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Glossary: Castor oil
Potash soap made from castor oil is an important component of our liquid soap detergent. We also use castor oil along with caustic potash solution to denature the alcohol which is used in our products. Since we have a special permission from the Spirits Monopoly office in Offenbach, we can avoid denaturing using other chemicals.

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Glossary: Rapeseed oil
Rapeseed is an important component of our soaps (liquid and powder). We use rapeseed from organic cultivation for the production of our liquid soap.

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Glossary: Soaps
Soaps are the oldest known detergents. They are characterized by very favorable environmental properties. Notable successes have been achieved in recent years in the field of soap production for detergents and cleaning agents. Our soaps produced from vegetable oils obtained from organic cultivation are among the most advanced detergents in terms of ecology and performance. We manufacture soaps according to the conditions of soft chemistry. Through a swift reaction process, we can make alkalis and fats at low temperatures with low energy consumption.

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Glossary: Soda
Soda (chemical name sodium carbonate) serves as a washing alkalie in washing powder and dishwasher detergent. Soda is produced from common salt by saturating a salt solution with ammonia and then charging it with carbon dioxide.

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Glossary: Soyabean oil
Soyabean oil is used in the manufacture of our liquid soaps. We use soyabean oil from organic cultivation.

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Glossary: Sunflower oil
Potash soap from sunflower oil is an important ingredient in our soap cleaner. We use sunflower oil from organic cultivation to manufacture this soap.

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Glossary: Surfactants
Surfactants is the term used for all detergents. Surfactants are divided into various groups: anionic, cationic, amphoteric and non-ionic. The declaration on the packaging of detergents and cleaning agents is prescribed by law. But such a declaration does not necessarily say anything about the ecological properties. However, cationic surfactants are generally considered problematic. It is insightful to divide surfactants according to the origin of their raw materials (vegetable or petro-chemical). Soaps occupy a special position among the surfactants.

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Glossary: Tripottasium citrate
Tripottasium citrate is a potash of citric acid. It is used in our liquid detergent and serves to prevent spontaneous lime-scale formation in hard water.

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Glossary: Trisodium citrate
Trisodium citrate is a sodium salt of citric acid. It is used in our dishwasher detergent and reduces lime-scale deposits in case of inadequate functioning of the ion exchanger in the dishwasher.

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Glossary: Zeolite
Zeolite is a mineral substance which can absorb the calcium and magnesium ions occuring in hard water. In place of these ions zeolite realeases sodium ions into the water. This leads to softening of the water. Zeolites themselves are not soluble in water. SODASAN water softener consists of Zeolite A.

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Glossary: Citric acid
Citric acid is one of the most widespread plant acids. It is found in many fruits, in lemon juice, milk, coniferous wood, beetroot juice etc. Citric acid is produced by the fermentation of sugar solution (e.g. from molasses). Citric acid is the most important component of our Clear Rinse solution and serves to adjust the pH in our liquid soaps.

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Glossary: Sugar surfactants
(See APG)

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