Water Treatment Chemicals

Whenever scale inhibition in water circuits or wastewater treatment are required, LANXESS products are used to stabilize the water hardness, control corrosion and disperse solids effectively. Specialties of LANXESS are used in industrial processes such as traditional water treatment circuits, once-through cooling processes as well as in surface cleaners, personal care products and detergents for private use.

Products: Bayhibit®, Baypure®, Epiphos®, Mersolat®


Chemical substances are the building block of both our living and inanimate environment.

What can be more "natural" than learning from nature? Biomimetic chemistry does exactly this, making industrial use of natural processes and products. 

LANXESS has been pursuing this type of research projects for years under the central themes of "Responsible Care" and "Sustainability" in order to highlight innovative routes for its customers.

LANXESS biomimetic chemistry is still a relatively new area of work and the Baypure® series of products were developed here.

With the Baypure® range, LANXESS is able to offer its customers a group of products that helps them to use water more efficiently and in a more environmentally friendly manner and, at the same time, to reduce the consumption of products that are not biodegradable and therefore a burden for the environment.

The global market for polycarboxylates is currently estimated to be several hundred thousand tons a year. The waste problem associated with these functional polymers remains largely unsolved. Although the polycarboxylates, which predominately use acrylic acid as raw material, are removed in water treatment plants, they are only mineralized to a very small extent. The majority are adsorbed in sewage plants. If the sewage sludge is used for agricultural purposes, the polymers return to the biosphere. They are not considered to be readily biodegradable.

Huge amounts of conventional chelants are also still used, although their use is controversial due to environmental and toxicological concerns.

Our aim was to develop and market new, ecologically compatible products. We used nature as a model for this and Baypure® is the result. The Baypure® products offer a well-balanced calcium and heavy metal binding capacity, calcium carbonate inhibition and keep soil in suspension. At the same time, they are less corrosive to glass, steel and decor on porcelain. The products are not considered as skin irritants and can be used for many ecolabel products.


Generally speaking, the composition of natural water used for industrial purposes is altered either on purpose or unintentionally.

In open circulating cooling systems for example, changes in temperature, concentration and an increase in the pH of the water are unavoidable. 

These are caused by the warming of the cooling water in the heat exchangers, evaporation and the discharge of CO2 in the cooling tower.

This often results in the supersaturation of the water with hardness constituents.

These hardness constituents are mostly poorly soluble alkaline earth salts, above all calcium carbonate, which result in the formation of scale (incrustations) in oversaturated solutions.

Scale on the surfaces of heat exchangers in a cooling system or on objects to be cleaned in industrial cleaning operations can cause considerable problems and should be prevented. The hardness constituents must be kept in solution despite supersaturation. Furthermore, protecting metallic materials against corrosion is often of key importance in the industrial use of water.

With the invention of the phosphonocarboxylic acid Bayhibit® AM in 1975, LANXESS launched an innovative product as a base component for the production of industrial cleaning agents and additives for cooling water.

1975 saw the start of a rapid development phase for the product and Bayhibit® is still one of the three most important phosphonates worldwide today. The product offers very efficient scale inhibition properties for calcium carbonate combined with an extremely high calcium tolerance and, in comparison to other phosphonates, an outstanding resistance to hydrolysis and oxidizing agents like chlorine, bromine or hypochlorite.


Under the trade name Epiphos®, LANXESS has developed a collection of selected mixtures of phosphoric acid mono-, di- and tri-esters based on different alcohols. These products are made from phosphorus pentoxide and are used in the lubricant industry as well as solvents and solubilizers in special industrial cleaners, such as wheel rim cleaners or engine cold cleaners. As multifunctional additives, they can be used in pigment pastes, paints or the metal working and metal cleaning industry and in textiles and mining. Depending on the alcohol groups, the Epiphos products can be emulsifiers, foam regulators, dispersants, wetting or dissolving agents. As mild acids, most of the Epiphos products have very low corrosion potential so that they can be used specifically for acid cleaning.


From a chemical point of view, Mersolat® is an alkanesulfonate. Alkanesulfonates, produced by Reychler in 1914, are considered to be the first synthetic surfactants. Nevertheless, it took more than 30 years for alkanesulfonates to became important. During World War II, the industrial production process was mainly developed and commercialized by IG Farbenindustrie. Based on hydrocarbon sources, with coal as the raw material the production of Mersolat in Germany reached approx. 80,000 tons per year at that time. Today, secondary alkanesulfonates are produced via  two different synthetic routes. The first is sulfoxidation which was predominantly developed by the former company Hoechst in Frankfurt. This method is based on sulfur dioxide and oxygen. The other important industrial process is  sulfochlorination, using sulfur dioxide and chlorine as the raw materials.

Today, LANXESS is a leading company in the production of secondary alkanesulfonates by sulfochlorination. The name Mersolat is a synthetic name based on the city Merseburg, where the chemists originated from, and oleum, the Latin word for oil.

The Mersolat® H surfactant is very water soluble allowing the manufacture of highly concentrated and easy-to-dose liquid laundry and dishwasher formulations. High wetting performance in detergent formulations with extreme acidic and alkaline pH conditions is self-evident for this type of alkanesulfonate. Despite the excellent resistance to strong acids, strong alkalines and concentrated electrolytes, Mersolat® meets the biodegradability requirements of modern surfactants.