WHAT IS DIRT?
Dirt is unclean matter, especially when in contact with a person’s clothes, skin or possessions. In such case they are said to become dirty.
Common types of dirt include:
Even when no visible dirt is present, contamination by microorganisms, especially pathogens, can still cause an object or location to be considered dirty. For example, computer keyboards are especially dirty as they contain on average 70 times more microbes than a lavatory seat
Are Dirt & Soil the same thing? Many people believe that soil and dirt are the same thing, but they’re not! Plants rely on soil to grow. Those plants then provide shelter and food for both animals and people.
Soil contains microorganisms, decaying organic matter, earthworms and other insects. Soil is a living environment. The earthworms and insects aerate the soil and add to the organic matter of the soil through their waste and when their bodies decay.
Dirt is basically dead soil. It does not contain any of the above. You can add organic matter (compost) to dirt to revitalize it. The organic matter will provide food for beneficial microorganisms so that the ecological system can start to regenerate.
Dirt can also mean dust, soil, or any substance that makes a surface not clean:
There are many forms of dirt say Proteins, Fat, Carbohydrate, Minerals, Starches and Lipids.
EFFECT OF ENZYMES ON DIRT
In general, enzyme detergents remove protein from clothes soiled with blood, milk, sweat, grass, etc. far more effectively than non-enzyme detergents. The use of enzymes allows lower temperatures to be employed and shorter periods of agitation needed.
Detergents effective at much lower temperatures help to save money and are more environmentally friendly. The ability to wash in lower temperatures also means, we can pop a wider variety of materials into the washing machine (such as wool and silk which could become damaged in high heats) lower temperatures are also great for dyed clothing (denim jeans ) as it reduces color transfer.
A peep into the world of Enzymes
Enzymes are long-chain proteins that serve as natural catalysts, meaning that they allow chemical reactions to occur rapidly and efficiently. The molecules upon which enzymes may act are called substrates and the enzyme converts these substrates into different molecules known as products. Almost all metabolic processes in the cell need enzyme catalysis in order to occur at rates fast enough to sustain life. The building blocks for each enzyme are the 20 naturally occurring amino acids. Enzymes are commonly used in paper processing, food manufacture, medical device cleaning, ethanol manufacture, as well as many common household cleaning processes such as laundry and dishwashing. In laundry and dishwashing, enzymes break down the basic components of stains and soils so they can be washed away more easily. Since one enzyme molecule can act on many substrate molecules (such as soils and stains), a small amount of enzyme added to a laundry detergent can provide a significant cleaning benefit to the consumer.
Enzyme activities are highly-specific to the types of substrates they can work on.
Enzyme proteins are active only when the specified substrate is present. The most common enzyme types used in the Household care industry are proteases, amylases, lipase, cellulases, mannanases, and pectinases. Variations in the structure of each type of enzyme results in different preferences for achieving peak performance. It has been found that stain-fighting performance can be improved by combining different types of enzymes. Hence, you will find that many modern detergents often contain several types of enzymes to ensure that an optimal level of cleaning can be achieved.
Through many years of testing it has been proven that enzymes have a very safe toxicological profile, lending to their sustainability profile. Enzymes are not mutagenic and not clastogenic. They are not reproductive or developmental toxins and have a low toxicity to aquatic systems.
Proteases accelerate the breakdown of proteins into peptides and soluble amino acids. Proteases are commonly used in laundry detergents as they are very effective in removing stains caused by food, grass and blood. The target stain and its specific protein determine the type of protease that should be included in a detergent.
Amylases accelerate the breakdown of starch-based stains from foods such as such as cereals, gravies, potato and pasta dishes, etc. In laundry, amylases ensure the decomposition & complete removal of starch even at lower wash temperatures.
Lipases accelerate the breakdown of tri-glycerides (lipids) into fatty acids and glycerol and are applied in laundry detergents to improve the removal of body stains and non-mineral oils and fats, such as lipstick, butter, vegetable oil, etc. from fabrics.
The trapped fatty material trapped in the cotton fibers is hydrolyzed to less hydrophobic substances with lipase and hence easier to remove.
Cellulases aid primary stain removal by modifying the surface of cellulosic fibers and fabrics, making it easier for the stain to come loose. Cellulases are used in laundry detergents to ensure better cleaning and color care.
With repeated washing the cotton fibers in the fabrics gets damaged and creates bristly cellulose microfibrils also known as “fuzz”. These trap the dirt and make colored & white clothes look dull. Cellulases help in releasing these trapped particulates of dirt which in turns makes white look whiter and colors look brighter. They also help prevent / minimize fabric fiber damage.
Mannanases break down mannans and effectively remove food stains containing guar gum or locust bean gum. One of the causes of greying of fabrics can also be the incomplete removal of these types of stains.
Mannanases break down the gum polymer into smaller, more water-soluble carbohydrate fragments which in turn are then easily removed during the wash.
Pectinases breakdown pectin and alter their structure easing their removal from the fabrics.
When bleach is used for removing many of the pectin-based stains, it only masks these stains and increases the possibility of soil re-deposition. Pectinases fully remove these stains by degrading the pectin, ensuring that clothes are really clean.
Pectinases can help remove a wide range of pectin based stains caused by fresh fruits like bananas, berries, oranges, tomatoes and from extracted product like jams, jellies, processed tomatoes, etc
WHAT IS ENZYME ACTIVITY?
The rate of enzyme activity depends on the amount of enzyme, the temperature and pH of the reaction solution. Favorable pH for many enzymes is 6-8 but there are exceptions like pepsin, a digestive enzyme in the stomach, which works best at pH 2. Special enzymes have been developed that work at higher temperatures for specific applications. Edenic Green enzymes are stable over a broad range of temperatures from 00 C to 550 C. The optimum pH should be in alkaline or higher alkaline range.