Leaching of Terbutryn and Its Photodegradation Products from Artificial Walls under Natural Weather Conditions

Ulla E. Bollmann, Greta Minelgaite, Michael Schlüsener, Thomas Ternes, Jes Vollertsen, Kai Bester

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


Terbutryn is a commonly used biocide in construction materials. Especially polymer-resin-based renders and paints, used in external thermal insulation composite systems, are very susceptible to microbial deterioration. Previous studies have shown that biocides leach out of the material when contacted with rainwater; thus, they reach surface waters where they might have adverse effects on aquatic organisms. The knowledge on the long-term leaching performance and especially the formation and fate of degradation products is rare. In the present study, the leaching of terbutryn from artificial walls equipped with two types of render was observed for 19 months. In addition to concentration and mass load determinations for terbutryn, photodegradation products were identified and studied in the leachate and render. The results show that terbutryn leached mainly within the first 6-12 months. During the exposure, only 3% of the initial terbutryn was emitted to the runoff, while 64-80% remained in the coating. The overall mass balance could be closed by including several degradation products. Contrary to expectations, the major fraction of transformation products remained in the material and was not washed off immediately, which is of high importance for the long-term assessment of biocides in coating materials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4289-4295
Number of pages7
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2016
Externally publishedYes

Programme Area

  • Programme Area 2: Water Resources
  • Programme Area 5: Nature and Climate


Dive into the research topics of 'Leaching of Terbutryn and Its Photodegradation Products from Artificial Walls under Natural Weather Conditions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this