New strategy for design of optimised combinations of antifoulants: mixture efficacy predictions, risk weighting and microcapsule technology
Paper in proceedings, 2008
Organisms differ in their sensitivity to toxicants, and each biocide will have its own efficacy profile. Whenever an antifoulant is used to affect organisms beyond its high-efficacy profile, an excess of biocides will be emitted to the environment. We propose an unprejudiced and rational design of efficacy-optimised combinations with minimum environmental risk. To control release of several antifoulants independently we use microcapsules bound to a polymer coating. The approach is based on three initial steps:
Mixture toxicity concepts are used to predict efficacy of >100 000 combinations of 2-8 antifoulants. Predictions are based on full concentration-efficacy relationships with regard to prevention of settling of fouling model organisms (e.g. periphyton, sea lettuce, barnacles, sea squirt, blue mussel). Based on the predictions we will identify a set of > 100 000 combinations that are efficacious to all model organisms, and define their mixture concentrations and mixture ratios.
Risk ratios (e.g. PEC/ PNEC) for the individual antifoulants are then used as weighing factors to rank the combinations according to their estimated relative risk to the environment. This results in a set of promising antifoulant combinations defined by their constituents, mixture ratios and total concentrations in water.
The release rate from each of the individual mixture components will be regulated by microcapsule numbers, chemical and physical properties, to deliver the expected combination at the surface of the ship hull. The flexibility of the paint formulation ・with one antifoulant only in each capsule ・suggests that the coating can easily be reformulated to adjust to more demanding conditions.
This study is a part of the Marine Paint Research Programme funded by MISTRA, the Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research, Sweden.