Stabilising and suspending active ingredients in crop protection products can be challenging. Without proper stabilisation, products can suffer formulation breakdown mechanisms such as flocculation and coalescence. In our ‘Polymeric Surfactant’ section we describe the role that dispersants and emulsifiers play in producing highly stable formulations. They keep particles apart from each other preventing these formulation breakdown processes.

However, there is another variant that needs to be considered when it comes to formulation stabilisation. This is the viscosity or how thick the formulation is. Increasing the viscosity of a formulation improves stability, by acting as a barrier to sedimentation and creaming and can be altered by adding a rheology modifier.
Rheology modifiers are sometimes referred to as thickeners or viscosity modifiers but they do much more than just thicken a formulation. A good rheology modifier structures the formulation but when a force is applied it becomes flowable and easily poured.

For example, if you think about tomato ketchup it is thick and sometimes difficult to get out of the bottle. However, if you shake the bottle (apply a force) the viscosity reduces and the ketchup flows out more easily. Therefore rheology modifiers can prevent sedimentation during transport and storage, but allow the product to flow when they need to be poured or pumped during application. 

We have a range of rheology modifiers designed to bring superior structuring to formulations, allowing you to control the viscosity and tailor it for your needs. Our Atlox Rheostrux™ range offers products for aqueous and non-aqueous systems which are easy to use and provide better stability, rheology profiles and suspensibility performance.