LINEAR ALKYLBENZENE (LAB) Definition
LINEAR ALKYLBENZENE (sometimes also known as LABs) is a family of organic compounds. Linear alkylbenzene (LAB) was introduced in the mid-1960s as a raw material for cleaning products. Since then, continuing and explosive research on its biodegradation and on its environmental and human toxicity has been performed. The efficiency of linear alkylbenzene sulfonate as surfactant is clearly established, and it is one of the safest and most cost-effective products in widespread commercial use. The aim of the present paper is to survey the most important developments and understandings of the chemistry of LAB production and of its physical and environmental properties. The expected consequence of this analytical survey is to envisage the continuous challenges for the detergents industry in catalytic production of LAB, better control of selectivity, replacement of corrosive and mineral liquid acid catalyst by heterogeneous acid catalyst and the maintenance of competitiveness of LAB with respect to natural alcohols. Since the 1960s, LABs have emerged as the dominant precursor of biodegradable detergents.
LAB is produced via the alkylation of benzene with normal olefins derived from a variety of sources such as kerosene (normal paraffins) or ethylene.
LINEAR ALKYLBENZENE (LAB) Applications
- LAB is sulfonated to produce linear alkylbenzene sulfonate (LAS),(more) a biodegradable surfactant. LAS replaced branched dodecylbenzene sulfonates, which were phased out because they biodegrade more slowly.
- Used in several neutrino detectors.
- Used in all kinds of detergent formulations like powder, liquid, gel, admixtures, bars and tablets.
- Used in agricultural herbicides.
- Used in Emulsion polymerization.
- Used in wetting agents.
- Used in electric cable oil.
- Used in ink solvents, and paint industry.
- Used as a replacement for dodecylbenzene sulfonate, a non-biodegradable surfactant.
- Used as primary cleaning agent in household detergents
- Good optical transparency (≈20 m).
- High light yield.
- Low amount of radioactive impurities.
- High flash point (140 °C).
- Easy safe handling.
- Performs well in deep underwater environments.
- Good biodegradability in the environment.
|CHARACTERISTICS||TEST METHOD||SPECIFICATION||TYPICAL VALUE|
|Density at 15.6°C , gr/cm3||ASTM D-4052||0.8575-0.8700||
|Saybolt Color||ASTM D-156||+29 min||>+30|
|Bromine Index , mg Br/100gr of Sample||ASTM D-1492||15 max||2|
|Doctor Test||ASTM D-4952||Negative||Negative|
|Moisture , ppm||UOP 481||200 Max||31|
|Refractive Index at 20°C||ASTM D-1218||1.480-1.490||
|Total Normal Paraffin , wt%||UOP 698||0.5 Max||
|2-Phenyl Alkanes , wt%||UOP 698||20 Max||
|Linear Alkyl Benzene , wt%||UOP 698||92 Min||
|Carbon Distribution , wt%
< LAB 10
LAB 10 + LAB 11
LAB 13 + LAB 14
> LAB 14
|Average Molecular Weight||UOP 698||238-244||
|Sulfonatability , wt%||UOP 429||98 Min||
|Tetralins , wt%||ECOSOL , UOP-929||1 Max||<0.5|
|Acid Wash Color , T%||EM 07203||15 Min||