Biodeg: Siemens test bed / wetlands system

Biodegradability and biodegradation tests characterize the biodegradability rate of organic substances.

Nos points forts

  • Many parameters of the environment and materials influence the biodegradability of a polymer such as temperature, oxygen, UV, nature and quantity of microorganisms, humidity, pH, chemical composition of the material, surface properties, its roughness, its crystallinity... and lastly thermal properties, specific surface of the material, its shape and thickness. To evaluate the biodegradability of a plastic, we can look at how the polymer is modified, how the polymer characteristics evolve, how it is colonized by microorganisms, characterize the formation and degradation of oligomers.
  • There are currently about twenty standards (European and international - ISO) concerning material biodegradability, depending on the environment of degradation (fresh water, sea, soil, compost) and depending on the material (textile, packaging, plastic, lubricant, detergents, medical).
  • The most used laboratory tests are based on aerobic respirometry and CO2 release techniques. They consist in exposing the material to a source of micro-organisms or inoculum (generally supernatant of activated sludge from treatment plant).