Polyelectrolytes are long chain organic polymers often having molecular weights in excess of one million and are either natural or synthetic in origin. Polyelectrolytes are water-soluble polymers and form an electrolyte group, like polycations and polyanions. They dissolve in water and make the polymers negatively and positively charged ions. When Polyelectrolytes are dissolved in water, one type of charge remains with the polymer while the other one disperses into water.
Polyelectrolytes are chemical flocculants used in water treatment; they act mainly in the coagulation-flocculation stage and in the conditioning/thickening of the sludge line.
Polyelectrolytes are mainly used in water purification, oil recovery, color removal (discoloration), COD /BOD reduction, paper & board production, mineral processing, metallurgy & metal smelting, super-plasticizers, hydrogels, implant coating, drug release system etc.
These charged polymers are bi-functional and can be used as flocculants and de-flocculants depending upon their molecular weights. It is the solid-liquid separation targets the flocculating nature of the polyelectrolyte whereas deflocculant serve as a dispersing agent.
Cationic, Anionic and Non-Ionic polyelectrolytes are available in both powder and liquid form.