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Patent Searching and Data

Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2010/007393
Kind Code:
A textile stain treatment composition comprises a super absorbent polymer having a fluid absorption capacity of over 500% and silica.

Application Number:
Publication Date:
January 21, 2010
Filing Date:
July 20, 2009
Export Citation:
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International Classes:
C11D3/12; B01J20/26; C09K3/32; C11D3/37; D06L1/00; D06L1/01
Foreign References:
Other References:
See also references of EP 2318496A1
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BOWERS, Craig, M. et al. (Legal Department - Patents GroupDansom Lane, Hull HU8 7DS, GB)
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1. A textile stain treatment composition comprising a super absorbent polymer having a fluid absorption capacity of over 500% and silica.

2. A composition according to claim 1, wherein the super absorbent polymer comprises from 5-40wt%, more preferably 10-35wt% and most preferably 20-25wt% of the composition.

3. A composition according to claim 1 or 2, wherein the super absorbent polymer is a cross-linked acrylate polymer.

4. A composition according to claim 1, 2 or 3, wherein the silica is present in an amount less than 30wt%, more preferably less than 25wt% and most preferably 10-15wt% of the composition

5. A composition according to any one of claims 1 to 4, wherein the silica is a fumed silica.

6. A composition according to any one of claims 1 to 5', wherein the composition comprises one or more detergent actives .

7. A composition according to claim 6, wherein the one or more detergent actives is adsorbed onto the super absorbent polymer .

8. A composition according to claim 6 or 7, wherein one or more detergent actives comprises a super-wetting agent.

9. A package comprising a composition according to any one of the preceding claims in a sachet, wherein the sachet comprises at least one side which includes a portion of a porous material.

10. The use of a composition according to any one of the preceding claims for the treatment of a stain on a fabric material .

11. The use according to claim 10, wherein the use .includes : -

a) application of the composition to a stain,

b) allowing the composition to absorb the stain, and

c) removing the composition

12. The use according to claim 11, wherein the use is on a carpet

13. The use according to claim 12, wherein the removal is with a vacuum cleaner.


The present invention relates to a textile treating composition.

Textile treatment compositions are well known and widely available. The treatment compositions are employed to address stains, particularly stains that are perceived to be worse than would otherwise occur in regular use / wear and difficult to remove, e.g. such as stains caused by highly coloured foodstuffs like red wine.

The compositions are applied as an additive to a washing cycle in an automatic washing machine or alternatively can be made available to be used out of the machine since in some instances an additive for use in a washing machine is not suitable, e.g. for a carpet cleaning composition, since the carpet cannot be loaded into a domestic washing machine. In the latter case an applicator such as a trigger spray / aerosol is utilized to apply the composition to the stain.

One main area of stain treatment is in treating stained carpets. Typical carpet cleaning treatments comprise a bleach which serves to at least partially chemically denature the compounds responsible for causing the stain and its removal and / or a number of surfactants / solvents to aid the separation of the stain causing composition from the fibres of the carpet. One issue with the use of these treatments is that the stain treatment step can be convoluted: a number of separate steps and materials are required in order to address a stain. These materials include the stain treatment composition itself, a cloth or other applicator and a removal means, which may require a second cloth / device and a source of fresh water for rinsing. It is not always possible to locate all of these materials when necessary and so carpet damage can occur either be ineffectual application of the treatment.

Further problems with the use of these additives include that the stain is rendered worse by treatment. This arises through the physical agitation which required to address the stain, leading to the partially untreated stain ending up being spread over a larger area than was initially stained. This leaves a worse stain than was originally present .

Additionally the stain treating composition can be left behind on the carpet, since complete removal is not always straightforward; leaving a residue which is unattractive from a visual perspective and from a tactile perspective leaves the carpet feeling tacky.

Moreover this residue proves to damaging to a carpet. EP 988362 showed that where a peroxide containing a bleach stain treatment composition is applied to address a stain on a carpet any residual peroxide left after the treatment dries and become converted to reactive peroxide radicals which damage the carpet fibres and carpet dye. It is an object of the invention to obviate or mitigate the issues outlined above.

According to a first aspect of the invention there is provided a textile stain treatment composition comprising a super absorbent polymer and a silica.

The textile stain removal composition of the invention has several advantages over prior art compositions. These advantages include the lack of spreading of any stain when being treated. Indeed by the operation of the stain treatment composition of the invention the stain is simply lifted from the textile article and held within the matrix of the composition: further spreading / increasing the scale of the stained area is simply not possible.

Additionally the composition of the present invention may be used to treat a textile without the need for any agitation in treating the stain - simple contact with the stain is sufficient to affect stain treatment. This makes the stain treatment process much more straightforward and removes the need for additional implements.

By super absorbent polymer it is intended to refer to a polymer that is able to absorb an amount of fluid that is considerably in excess of the weight of the polymer itself. In the context of the present invention it is intended that the term super absorbent polymer shall be taken to refer to a polymer which is capable of absorbing over 500%, more preferably over 600%, even more preferably over 700%, e.g. from 700% to 1000% or 1200% of its own weight in fluid. The absorbed fluid may be water based, oil based or an ad- mixture of water and oil, e.g. an emulsion (oil-in-water or water-in-oil ) .

Preferably the super absorbent polymer comprises from 5- 40wt%, more preferably 10-35wt% and most preferably 20- 25wt% of the composition.

The super absorbent polymer is preferably based on acrylic / acrylate monomers and as such is preferably an acrylic / acrylate polymer. These are commonly made from the polymerization of acrylic acid blended with sodium hydroxide in the presence of an initiator to form a poly-acrylic acid, potassium / sodium salt (referred to as cross-linked sodium polyacrylate) . Other materials are also suitable to make a super absorbent polymer, such as polyacrylamide copolymer, ethylene maleic anhydride copolymer, cross-linked carboxy- methyl-cellulose, polyvinyl alcohol copolymers, cross- linked polyethylene oxide, starch, guar gum and starch grafted copolymer of polyacrylonitrile . Preferred examples of super absorbent polymers include Water Lock (A-180, A- 220, B-204, G-404, G-504, G-580) (available from Grain Processing); Acusol (771, 772) (available from Rohm & Haas); Luquasorb 1280 and L74 SAP (available from BASF); Sorbfresh 220, Lysorb 218, ActyFill 20 (available from ADM Lysac) ; 432776, 436364, 435325 (available from Sigma Al- drich) ; Stockosorb 500 XL, Aquahc CA (available from De- gussa) , Petrolsorb (available from Watersorb) ; Disintex 200 (available from ISP) .

The silica has been found to be beneficial in the addressing of grease components of a stain, aiding its removal from the textile. Generally the silica is present in the composition in an amount of less than 30wt%, more prefera- bly less than 25wt% and most preferably 10-15wt% of the composition.

Generally the particle size of the silica is up to 350μm, more preferably up to 200μm, more preferably up to lOOμm, more preferably up to 50μm, more preferably up to 40μm, more preferably up to 30μm, more preferably up to 20μm, and most preferably up to lOμm.

Preferred forms of silica include those supplied under the Trade Names Sipernat, Aerosil and Aeroperl (available from Degussa); HDK (Wacker) ; NeoSil PClO (Ineos); and Cab-O-Sil (Cabot) .

A filler may be present. The filler may be present at a level of up to 80wt%, e.g. about 55wt%. Preferred examples of fillers include compounds such as sodium citrate.

The composition generally comprises other detergent actives .

Where present the detergent active may be powdered. (The detergent active itself may be in solid powdered form or may be a liquid which is capable of being converted into a powder when brought into contact with another component of the composition (e.g. by spraying) .

Alternatively (and more preferably) it has been found that the composition is able to function particularly effectively when the one or more other detergent actives are present in the form of a liquid. Most preferably the liquid comprises water and as such the detergent actives need not be in liquid form when pure but may preferably be in liquid form when dissolved in a medium which includes water. Said liquid is preferably at least partially (and most preferably fully) adsorbed onto / into the super absorbent polymer. Without wising to be bound by theory it is postulated that in this embodiment when certain detergent actives are present (see below) the uptake of a fluid associated with a stain is greatly facilitated. Further it is felt that at least some of the adsorbed detergent active is able to leave the super absorbent polymer at or about the interface between the super absorbent polymer and a fluid associated with a stain. When this occurs take up of the stain fluid into the super absorbent polymer has been found to be greatly facilitated.

Most preferably the composition includes a surfactant. In this regard it has been found that the inclusion of a surfactant aids the removal of certain stains particularly greasy stains. It is postulated that the surfactant is able to become integrated into the stain and in doing so alters the chemical nature of the stain so that it can be removed more easily. More specifically it is thought that the surfactant aids the wetting of the stain and hence it removal. Preferably the level of surfactant inclusion is in the range of 0.1 to 5wt%, more preferably 0.5 to 1.0wt%.

Optionally the surfactant comprises a super-wetting agent; where present this is present in an amount of about 0.5wt%. Preferred examples of super wetting agents include, but are not limited to, fluoropolymers, di/tri siloxane glycol ethers (e.g., Q2-5211, commercially available from Dow Corning, Midland, Mich.), amine glycol ether of the form H 2 N— (CH 2 Ix— (OCH 2 CH 2 Jy—OH, where x=2-4, and y=4-10, acety- lenic diols with a low volatile organic content (VOC) of less than 5%, and more preferably less than 2%, as determined by the EPA method 24 (e.g., DYNOL 604, commercially available from Air Products) , and di/tri siloxane glycerol polymers and amine glycerol polymers with a glycerol-based hydrophilic head.

Another short chain amphiphile which can be used as a super wetting agent is characterized by the formula:


wherein Ri or R2 are a straight or branched chain alkyl group having 2 to 6 carbon atoms and x or w is a number from 2 to 5, more preferably 2 to 4 and y or z is a number from 1 to 4, more preferably 1 to 3 and the amphiphile has an HLB of about 6 to about 9, preferably about 7 to about 8. Preferred amphiphiles have a C6 alkyl group and 2 to 5 EO such as hexanol 5E0 such as Emulan HE50) . Generally the surfactant comprises an anionic and / or a nonionic surfactant.

Preferred examples of nonionic surfactants include Cβ-Cis alcohol alkoxylated with 5 to 7 moles of ethylene oxide. A wide variety of alkoxylated fatty alcohols are known to the art and these vary considerably in HLB (hydrophile- lipophile balance) . For purposes of this invention, it is preferable to employ an alkoxylated alcohol which is relatively hydrophobic. Preferred surfactants are fatty alcohols having from about 8 about 15 carbon atoms, alkoxylated with about 5 to 7 moles of ethylene oxide. A particularly preferred surfactant is that sold under the trademark Lialet 125 and has a formulation of C 12 -C 15 alcohols alkoxylated with 7 moles of ethylene oxide.

Preferred examples of anionic surfactants include straight- chained or branched alkyl sulfates and alkyl polyalkoxy- lated sulfates, also known as alkyl ether sulfates. Such surfactants may be produced by the sulfation of higher C 8 - C 2O fatty alcohols.

Other examples of primary alkyl sulfate surfactants are those of formula:

ROSO 3 -M +

wherein R is a linear C 8 -C 20 hydrocarbyl group and M is a water-solubilising cation. Preferably R is Ci O -Ci 6 alkyl, for example Ci 2 -Ci 4 , and M is alkali metal such as lithium, sodium or potassium.

Examples of secondary alkyl sulfate surfactants are those which have the sulfate moiety on a "backbone" of the molecule, for example those of formula:

CH 2 (CHz) n (CHOSO 3 -M + ) (CH 2 ) m CH 3

wherein m and n are independently 2 or more, the sum of m+n typically being 6 to 20, for example 9 to 15, and M is a water-solubilising cation such as lithium, sodium or potassium. Especially preferred secondary alkyl sulfates are the (2,3) alkyl sulfate surfactants of formulae:

CH 2 (CH 2 ) X (CHOSO 3 -M + )CH 3 and

CH 3 (CH 2 ) x (CHOSO 3 -M + ) CH 2 CH 3

for the 2-sulfate and 3-sulfate, respectively. In these formulae x is at least 4, for example 6 to 20, preferably 10 to 16. M is cation, such as an alkali metal, for example lithium, sodium or potassium.

Examples of alkoxylated alkyl sulfates are ethoxylated alkyl sulfates of the formula:

RO(C 2 H 4 O) n SO 3 -M +

wherein R is a C 8 -C 2 O alkyl group, preferably Ci 0 -CiS such as a C12-C16, n is at least 1, for example from 1 to 20, preferably 1 to 15, especially 1 to 6, and M is a salt-forming cation such as lithium, sodium, potassium, ammonium, al- kylammonium or alkanolammonium. These compounds can provide especially desirable fabric cleaning performance benefits when used in combination with alkyl sulfates.

The alkyl sulfates and alkyl ether sulfates will generally be used in the form of mixtures comprising varying alkyl chain lengths and, if present, varying degrees of alkoxyla- tion.

Other anionic surfactants which may be employed are salts of fatty acids, for example C 8 -Ci 8 fatty acids, especially the sodium potassium or alkanolammonium salts, and alkyl, for example C 8 -Ci 8 , benzene sulfonates. To bring the pH to within the desired range of a sufficient amount of an acid or an akali may be added to adjust the pH.

The compositions of this invention desirably also contain at least one organic solvent which is preferably water- miscible. Such useful organic solvents include: the linear alcohols such as ethanol, isopropanol and the isomers of butanol; diols; glycols such as ethylene glycol, propylene glycol and hexylene glycol; glycol ethers, etc. Low molecular weight solvents, i.e., those from 1 to 8 carbon atoms, are preferred. Particularly preferred solvents are propylene glycol and glycerol.

The composition additionally may comprise up to 10%wt, 8% wt, 6%wt, 4%wt, 2%wt, l%wt or 0.5%wt of minor ingredients selected from one or more of the following: dye, fragrance, preservative, or a bittering agent.

Given the nature of the composition and its sensitivity to water .it is preferred that the composition is packaged in a water-tight / air-tight packaging so that it is not detrimentally affected before use.

The composition may be used in a free flowing form, preferably as a free-flowing granulate / powder. In an alternative the composition may be packaged in a sachet / pouch which has at least one porous side to be brought into contact with a surface / material to be treated. Conversely the side of the sachet which is intended to be gripped by a user or even pressed onto the article being cleaned by a user may comprise an impermeable material such that contact of the stain material with the user is minimised. Preferred examples of porous materials for the porous side of the sachet include non-woven webs comprising fibrous / micro-fibrous polymeric materials such as polyethylene, polypropylene and higher alkenes.

Preferred examples of materials for the non-pour side of the sachet include polymers of alkenes made into a non- permeable sheet.

Thus the sachet may conveniently consist of one or two sheets sealed together about their periphery, with the composition inside. The sachet could comprise a further sheet or sheets. The seal may be by means of adhesive or dielectric welding or, preferably, heat sealing or, most preferably, ultrasound sealing or a combination thereof. When the seal is by heat sealing the sheets may comprise a thermoplastic to facilitate this. The material forming the adhesive strips can be a so called hot melt comprising various materials, such as APP, SBS, SEBS, SIS, EVA and the like, or a cold glue, such as a dispersion of various materials, e.g. SBS, natural rubber and the like, or even a solvent- based or a two-component adhesive system. Furthermore, the material may be capable of cross linking to form specific, permanent chemical bonds with the various layers. The amount of adhesive is a function of the type of adhesive used, however it is generally between 0.2 and 20 g/m 2 .

Conventional materials used in tea bag manufacture or in the manufacture of sanitary or diaper products may be suitable, and the techniques used in making tea bags or sanitary products can be applied to make products useful in this invention. Such techniques are described in WO 98/36128 and EP 380127A. A preferred example of an overall composition in accordance with the first aspect of the invention is shown below.

Super Absorbent Polymer 25 wt%

Silica 15 wt%

Sodium Lauryl sulfate 0.3 wt%

Alcohol ethoxylate C4-C8 5EO 0.5 wt%

Trisodium Citrate Dihydrate ' ,

Water and minors 0.7 wt%

Total 100.000

According to a second aspect of the invention there is provided the use of a textile stain treatment composition comprising a super absorbent polymer and silica.

Preferably the use includes a number of steps :-

a) application of the composition to a stain,

b) allowing the composition to absorb the stain, and

c) removing the composition.

In step (b) it has been observed that the composition swells from its original size and may become discoloured and damp with the incorporation of the stain material. It is preferred that step (b) is performed over the course of a few seconds to a few minutes or alternatively that the composition is allowed to remain in contact with the stain until it appears that the composition is no longer swelling in size.

One use of the composition is generally enough to treat most stains. In extreme cases multiple / repeated uses may ¬ be necessary. Generally the composition is applied over the whole surface of the stain. For additional security the composition may be applied so that the area covered is slightly larger than the stain being treated and there is an overlap of the applied area of treatment composition onto some unsoiled material .

(When the composition is in a free-flowing form) usually the composition is applied to the carpet using a suitable applicator. An applicator which has a suitable discharge aperture or plurality of discharge apertures is suitable for application.

(When the composition is in a free-flowing form) the composition may be worked into the carpet using a brush or may be worked using an alternative means such as tamping.

Any textile may be treated by the composition including articles of clothing {even when still being worn), upholstery, curtains, carpets, rugs, bed ware and tableware. Generally the use is on a carpet / rug. Here the application finds most utility since carpets are notoriously easy to stain with food materials and at the same time are difficult to clean because of their size and [in many cases] being fixed in place.

Preferably the removal is with a domestic vacuum cleaner.

The invention will now be illustrated with reference to the following non-limiting examples. Example 1

The following formulations were prepared.

The formulations were prepared by admixing a liquid pre-mix comprises all of the components other than the super absorbent polymer and then admixing same with the super absorbent polymer.

The compositions were tested against stains formed on carpet test pieces. The results are shown in the following tables .

The impregnated powder generally displays a superior performance when compared with the 'dry' powder.