Everything about Potassium Polyacrylate – Superabsorbent Polymer for Agriculture.
Potassium polyacrylate is a kind of superabsorbent polymer. So, what is a superabsorbent polymer (SAP)?
As an advanced physical absorbent material, SAP can quickly absorb a large amount of water and lock it firmly. When the water absorption reaches saturation, it changes from a powder or granular state to a hydrogel state.
Generally, the water absorption capacity of SAP can reach hundreds of times of its own. For special purposes, it can reach thousands of times.
As an eco-friendly material, it is totally non-toxic, harmless, and nonpolluting.
Potassium polyacrylate is a type of SAPs for plants as a water-retaining agent.
Compared with ordinary SAP, agriculture grade SAP (potassium polyacrylate) has undergone post-processing in the production process (such as grafting), which makes it have the unique advantages of being specially used in agriculture:
These advantages make it like a “mini reservoir”: it absorbs enough water and stores it during the rainy season or during irrigation, and then continuously provides water to the plants when the soil is dry.
As a result, it brings many intuitive benefits to agriculture such as:
Agriculture grade SAP consists of a set of polymeric chains that are parallel to each other and regularly linked to each other by cross-linking agents, thus forming a network.
When water comes into contact with one of these chains, it is drawn into the molecule by osmosis. Water rapidly migrates into the interior of the polymer network where it is stored. That’s how SAP powder turns to water gel.
As this water gel’s absorption ability is bigger than soil but less than roots of plants, the absorbed water by SAP will be released to plants when it is dry.
Tips: the specific retention of agriculture SAP is 1.3-1.4 MPa and the specific retention of roots is about 1.6-1.7 MPa.
Performance Study in varying soil classifications (test the water retention capacity of SAP in different soils)
Soil: 500ml; Water: 750ml; SAP: 5 gram;
|Test item||Control Group (without SAP) – 762g||Test Group (with SAP) – 768g|
|Water passing (ml)||425||150|
|Water retaining (ml)||325||600|
|Test item||Control Group (without SAP) – 615g||Test Group (with SAP) – 626g|
|Water passing (ml)||275||100|
|Water retaining (ml)||475||650|
|Test item||Control Group (without SAP) – 407g||Test Group (with SAP) – 400g|
|Water passing (ml)||352||200|
|Water retaining (ml)||398||550|
Yes. The starch-grafted potassium polyacrylate is biodegradable. In addition, other types of potassium polyacrylate for agriculture and forestry can be continuously decomposed naturally in the soil. The decomposed product is water, carbon dioxide, and ammonia gas will not pollute the soil.
It is worth mentioning that sodium polyacrylate is very similar to potassium polyacrylate in appearance. Still, it will form sodium ions after decomposing in soil, causing soil compaction and salinization, so you must pay attention when purchasing.