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Environmental fate & pathways

Hydrolysis

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Description of key information

TEA-Esterquats are characterized by hydrophobic parts of the moieties “R” linked to the charged head group via ester bonds R-C(O)O-and are therefore expected to be subject to degradation by chemical or biological hydrolysis. This is supported by the test on hydrolysis for partially unsaturated TEA-Esterquat. Half-lives of 17 (pH 7) and 11.3 d (pH 9) were deduced from the reaction rate constants at 25 °C. Di- and mono-ester were detected as degradation products.

According to REACH regulation (Annex VIII, 9.2.2.1 column 2) a hydrolysis test does not need to be conducted if the substance is readily biodegradable. As the TEA-Esterquats are determined to be readily biodegradable, biodegradable under anaerobic conditions and under different environmental conditions (water, sewage treatment plants) a study on hydrolysis is considered to be not necessary.

 

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Half-life for hydrolysis:
11.3 d
at the temperature of:
25 °C

Additional information

TEA-Esterquats possess ester links introduced into the head-group of the molecules, which have the quality that they are susceptible to biodegradation as well as hydrolysis. According to REACH regulation (Annex VIII, 9.2.2.1 column 2) a hydrolysis test does not need to be conducted if the substance is readily biodegradable. As the TEA-Esterquats are determined to be readily biodegradable, biodegradable under anaerobic conditions and under different environmental conditions (water, sewage treatment plants) a study on hydrolysis is considered to be not necessary. However a study on hydrolysis as a function of pH was performed according to OECD 111 (2004). At pH 4 and 50 °C, the degradation of the main component of partially unsaturated TEA-Esterquat was less than 10 % over a period of 120 h. The corresponding half-life at 25 °C is therefore assumed to be above one year (default assumption acc. to guidelines). In contrast, at pH 7 and 9 and 50 °C, more than 10 % of the test item were hydrolysed within 120 h. Based on the results, half-lives of 17 d (pH 7) and 11.3 d (pH 9) were deduced from the reaction rate constants at 25 °C. Di- and mono-ester were detected as degradation products.