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Long-term Treatment for Water & Surfaces

Dr Hiten Mehta, Asst Vice President & Head-R&D, Grasim Industries Ltd

Dr Hiten Mehta, Asst Vice President & Head-R&D, Grasim Industries Ltd (Chemicals Division) shares his expert take on how the Railways can avail of longer term cleaning solutions.

Harnessing Chlorine

Without chlorine, no bleaching is possible. But how often can the Railways sprinkle or spray a chemical for disinfection? How much time is available to do this? Not very long. A long term solution is wanted, ideally something that is effective for at least 8-10 hours.

Each problem needs a unique solution. Even if poly aluminium chloride is the chemical of choice, the product needs to be adjusted for chloride content and blend, depending upon the industry. “We fine-tune these solutions at our state-of-the-art R&D centre which helps Grasim Industries’ other production units, as well as various other customers across the globe, with solutions for water.”

Another product which is important in treating raw water is aluminium chlorohydrate. A dosage as low as 5ppm can remove all soil from water; a sustainable solution that was the first in the country to meet BIS standards.

Maintaining an acceptable chlorine level in the water for longer keeps it disinfected for much longer. “This depends on particle size and value addition; through our distributors, we are already supplying the railways, apart from municipal boards and hospitals, with high strength bleaching powder.”

The Question of Sustainability

“As a scientist, I see biodegradability as a tricky world. Biodegradation is a process where organic matter breaks down naturally to its simpler components; this can also be achieved by other means. We meet all global sustainability standards but for us, sustainability is a by-product of developing and manufacturing the best possible product, which meets all expectations, not only those of sustainability.”

Range of Cleaners

Grasim’s offerings include floor cleaners, surface cleaners, toilet cleaners, drain cleaners, fabric cleaners, glass cleaners, hand cleaners and bathroom cleaners. “We do not just clean, we disinfect too, that’s our motto.” For example, the multi surface cleaner will not only remove paan stains from the surface, it will also eliminate germs, and the surface will remain thus for the next eight hours.

Their toilet cleaner has been developed to have the right viscosity, chemical balance and quality of chemical, and removes the hardest of stains after just one flush.

Drain blockage is a big challenge in the railways. Grasim Industries is the largest manufacturer of caustic solutions in the country, and when used in the right amount, delivers excellent results.

Surface sanitisation has become a new requirement for the Railways, especially for the seat upholstery. “Once sprayed without product, the seat will become and remain germ-free for at least eight hours.”

From coaches to stations, floor cleaning is a huge challenge. Grasim’s product provides a level of floor disinfection that is required in operation theatres. This claim has been tested by third-party NABL-accredited labs as well as in-house labs.

And finally, health and safety comes down to personal hygiene. “We have come up with a hand cleaner that has just the right pH. Patch tests have been done on a variety of people of diverse ages, genders and geographies to confirm the efficacy of the product.” It goes without saying that there is no harsh effect
on the skin.

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