FERTILIZERS WITH SLOW/CONTROLLED RELEASE OF ACTIVE COMPOUNDS, PREPARED BY MICROENCAPSULATION IN ENVIRONMENTAL FRIENDLY POLYMERIC STRUCTURES

TITLE: FERTILIZERS WITH SLOW/CONTROLLED RELEASE OF ACTIVE COMPOUNDS, PREPARED BY MICROENCAPSULATION IN ENVIRONMENTAL FRIENDLY POLYMERIC STRUCTURES
ACRONYM: SLOREFERT
PROJECT LOCATION: R&D Institute for Chemistry and Petrochemistry ICECHIM, 202 Spl. Independentei; Bucharest, ROMANIA
FUNDING PROGRAMME: ERA-NET MANUNET
BUDGET INFO:

   - Total amount = € 641.195;
   - Co-funding = € 198.026;
STARTING: 01/05/2012
ENDING: 30/04/2015

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 A modern and sustainable agriculture involves the use in appreciable quantities of fertilization products to be applied in various forms (liquid, solid, radicular, foliar). It is well-known that from this delivered quantities, only a small part is absorbed by plants in an useful way, significant quantities of fertilizers being washed in unusable areas or degraded by environmental factors, before being absorbed by plants, these having a limited capacity of rapid intake of mineral nutrients. On the other hand, use of exaggerated quantities of mineral fertilizers leads inevitably to the appearance in culture plants of significant quantities of chemical products derived from these fertilizers (nitrates, nitrosamines etc), that can be found inherently in the foods, affecting the health of population, so having an extremely powerful impact over environment.
Taking into account the necessity of reducing the impact of use of chemical fertilizers over the alimental quality of vegetal production, the Project proposes modern formulations obtained through particulate methods of encapsulation of fertilizers, with slow release of active substances, in order to be entirely metabolized by plants and minimize the risk of soil and environment contamination with metabolic by-products (nitrozamines and nitrozoderivates). Therefore, it is estimated a significant diminution of the quantities of fertilizers necessary to be applied per surface unit and avoidance of appearance of byproducts in culture plants, as effects of overdoses.

COORDINATING BENEFICIARY: INCDCP ICECHIM Bucharest
ROMANIAN Partners:
• Research Institute for Auxiliary Organic Products, Medias-ROMANIA- PARTNER P1
• National Research&Development Institute for Pedology, Agrochemistry and Environment Protection ICPA Bucharest -ROMANIA - PARTNER P2
SPANISH PARTNERS:
• The Technological Centre L’Urederra, Navarre-SPAIN- PARTNER P3
• Gumiel y Mendía S.L., Navarre-SPAIN - PARTNER P4

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The specific objectives of project are elaboration, testing and homologation of minimum two original compositions of chemical ecological fertilizers, with controlled-release activity, prepared by encapsulation of the fertilizing raw-materials into polymeric microcapsules, by interfacial policondensation. Two innovative technologies will be developed to be transferred to SME’s pilot scale for manufacture of slow-released fertilizer compositions. The experimental techniques of application and appropriate doses of fertilizers will be optimized in order to improve their bioavailability in plant tissues and to reduce the influence of the perturbing environmental agents.
Another objective of the project is to strengthen cooperation among research institutions and SMEs from different EU countries, interconnection of research structures (team and equipment) to achieve competitive research structures at European level in specific research areas.
slorefert - etape  • Foundation of R&D strategy and experimental model elaboration for microencapsulated fertilizers production
• Validation of the lab-scale experimental model to optimize formulations and technologies, design projection of the pilot plant for manufacture of microencapsulated fertilizers
• Demonstration the functionality of original technical solutions in the experimental pilot plant
• Identification and transfer of the innovative technical solutions for the manufacture of original slow-release microencapsulated fertilizers to the SME
• Information, dissemination of the Project results and publicity regarding the Project

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1. Economical impact of the project
The development of new types of microencapsulated fertilizers with controlled release, obtained with reduced consumption of raw materials and energy will generate a favorable economic impact concretized in the economic growth of the units with profile of production of mineral fertilizers, starting with the SME partner. The position on the market of these units will be improved, occupying a top position on the market of slow-release fertilizers. The dissemination of results will lead to the identification of new potential beneficiaries. This will lead to the improvement of the performances and competitivity of SMEs, concretized by the growth of rate of turnover and profit, development of the technological capacities. The experience accumulated in the Project will stimulate them to continue the activity by implementation of innovative technologies and development of new portfolio of products for industrial platforms.


2. Social impact of the project
Having great chances of implementation on industrial level of production, the innovative technologies will generate the need of new workplaces.
Participation in the Project of research teams from units with production profile able to implement the results, will lead to the growing of their own capacity for research and development, also to consolidate the international cooperation between innovative SMEs. The final products of the project are destined to the production of ecologic crops free from toxic compounds resulted from known mineral fertilizers used in conventional agricultural practices. The positive social impact is obviously better conditions of work and life, because the consequence implies at least the diminution of professional sickness risk for the manufacturers and farmers and in life quality improvement for the consumers.


3. Environment impact
The application of the project results will have a positive impact over the environment, such as an important diminution of risks of accumulation in the agro-products of now-inherent wastes from the chemical fertilization process, the original formulations of slow-release fertilizers having lower doses of use comparative to the classic ones and the best intake by the plants.

• Foundation of research-development strategy and elaboration of experimental model for production and complex characterization (physico-chemical and biological) of microencapsulated slow-release fertilizers and eco- friendly polymeric materials; Development of laboratory scale experimental model;
• Validation of the lab-scale experimental model to optimize formulations and technologies, polymeric materials and biological testings; Selection of fertilizing formulations in experimental model of lab-scale technologies and prepare product samples for greenhouse and field biological screening; Optimization of experimental model for lab –scale technologies for preparation of polymers for microencapsulated fertilizers; Biological characterisation and levigation testing of fertilizers; Experimental pilot plant design for manufacture of microencapsulated fertilizers;
• Project analysis and management; Publicity in the media; Exploratory Project WORKSHOP 2013 and 2015
• Demonstration the functionality of original technical solutions in the experimental pilot plant: Design and built-up a pilot plant at ICPAO Mediaş Romania, for manufacture of controlled-release microencapsulated fertilizers and technical assistance in building pilot plant at ICPAO to preliminary testing the functionality of experimental pilot transferring technology; Technology transfer for manufacture microencapsulated fertilizers, testing operational parameters and making the first charge of product; Homologation of lab –scale technologies for preparation of two microencapsulated fertilizers; Elaborate documentation for production technology of homologated products, prepare samples of products for final conformity validation; Comparative experimental field tests for complete functionality of the produced fertilizers in climatic and soil conditions specific to Romania and Spain; Elaborate documentation for biological conformity to obtain authorization for producing, marketing and use new microencapsulated fertilizers in European agriculture; Final elaborate documentation for homologation of validated products and conformity validation and authorisation of the two manufactured products. Samples and prototype presentation at technical exhibitions, dissemination of final results of the project;
• Identifying and patenting innovative technical solutions for manufacturing original microencapsulated slow release fertilizers; It was elaborated documentation for 2 patent applications for the original products and process for obtaining them, according to research activities of the project; Were registered 2 National Patent applicatios for Fertilizer products having slow-release activity and processes for obtaining them (Romanian Patent Applications A/00869/19.11.2013 and A/ 00271 /20.04.2015); Were finalized field test and was elaborated documentation for final approval of 2 slow-release fertilizer compositions; According this, it was achieved final conformity validation and authorisation of the two manufactured products, called SLOREFERT N and SLOREFERT MICRO. It was filed to OSIM a trademark request for the two products, as the verbal trademark „SLOREFERT”. Were finalized and homologated 3 lab-scale technologies: (2 Homologated with PV number 1833 /30.10.2014 ) as follows:

MAIN DELIVERABLE RESULTS TO UNDERTAKINGS:

 

Nr. Kind of deliverable Nr. Characteristics Owner
1 Products 3 • Slow release fertilizer SLOREFERT N containing N, P, Ca and Mg (Aut. MADR nr. 697/11.02.2015)- authorized for agricultural and forestry use.
• Slow release fertilizer SLOREFERT MICRO containing N, Fe, Cu and Mn (Aut. MADR nr. 698/11.02.2015)- authorized for agricultural and forestry use.
• Biodegradable polimeric (poliesteric) coating composition for granular fertilizers coatings

ICECHIM


ICECHIM


L’UREDERRA

2 Technologies 3 Laboratory technology to obtain slow-release fertilizer SLOREFERT-N (Homologated with PV number 1833 /30.10.2014)
Laboratory technology to obtain slow-release fertilizer SLOREFERT MICRO (Homologated with PV number 1833 /30.10.2014)
Laboratory technology for Biodegradable polimeric composition for granular fertilizers coating

ICECHIM


ICECHIM


L’UREDERRA

3 Pilot plant 1 Medium-scale pilot plant (50 kg) for testing and validating the lab-scale technologies (experimental models). ICPAO
4 Trademark application 1 “SLOREFERT” (verbal, individual trademark request) ICECHIM
5 Patent Applications 2 2 National Patent Applications Registered (A/00869/19.11.2013 and A/ 00271 /20.04.2015) ICECHIM
6 Documentations/Studies 19 Research reports and documentations in specific fields of the project All of Partners
» Exploratory Workshop Slorefert
» Autorizari SLOREFERT
» Autorizatii finale SLOREFERT
» PV omologare tehnologii

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During the project have been carried out multiple activities to disseminate project results through participation in national and international conferences and symposia, highlighting sources of project financing.


1. Scientific articles in ISI rated journals:
1. Leaching and in vitro agrochemical screening for new slow release fertilizers containing N, P, Ca, and Mg -Constantin Neamţu, Mariana Popescu, Ștefan-Ovidiu Dima, Academic Research Journal of Agricultural Science and Research, Vol. 3(3), pp. 45-53, March 2015 (IF= 0,312)
2. Synthesis optimization and characterization of multicomponent slow-release fertilizers obtained through microencapsulation techniques, Constantin Neamţu, Mariana Popescu, Florin Oancea, Ştefan-Ovidiu Dima, Open Chemistry., 2015; 13: 813–823 (IF= 1,329)


II. Dissemination activities carried out:
1. Slow-release fertilizers obtained by encapsulation in ecofriendly polymeric structures, Neamtu Constantin, Popescu Mariana, Gheorghe Răceanu, International Conference "Agricultural and food sciences, processes and technologies: AGRI-FOOD 20", May 10-12, 2012, Sibiu, Romania
2. Fertilizers with slow release of activ e compounds prepared by microencapsulation in environmental friendly polymeric structures, Neamtu Constantin, Popescu Mariana, Gheorghe Răceanu, The XXXII-th Romanian Chemistry Conference, October 03-05, 2012, Călimăneşti-Căciulata, Vâlcea, Romania
3. Slow-release fertilisers obtained through microencapsulation techniques ,Constantin Neamtu, Gheorghe Raceanu, Emil Stepan, Florin Oancea, Valentin Pleşu ,The 18-th Romanian International Conference for Chemistry and Chemical Engineering RICCCE 18, 4-7 September 2013, Sinaia, Romania
4. Compozitii complexe de fertilizanți slow – release obtinuti prin microencapsulare, Neamțu Constantin, Popescu Mariana, Răceanu Gheorghe, Oancea Florin , CIEC National Symposium “FOLOSIREA ÎNGRĂŞĂMINTELOR MINERALE ŞI ORGANOMINERALE ÎN AGRICULTURĂ”, October 07, 2013, Bucharest, Romania
5. Fertilizanti slow – release: caracteristici fizico – chimice, Carmen Sirbu, Cioroianu Traian, Neamtu C-tin, Oprica Ioana, Grigore Adriana, Marin Nicoleta, Mihalache Daniela, Iancu Mariana, CIEC National Symposium “FOLOSIREA ÎNGRĂŞĂMINTELOR MINERALE ŞI ORGANOMINERALE ÎN AGRICULTURĂ”, October 07, 2013, Bucharest, Romania
6. Fertilizanţi slow-release cu azot şi microelemente obţinuţi prin microîncapsulare core-shell în structuri ureo-aldehidice, Constantin Neamtu, Mariana Popescu, Gheorghe Raceanu, Traian Cioroianu, Carmen Sirbu, CIEC National Symposium “ÎNGRĂSĂMINTE CLASICE SI ECOLOGICE EFICIENTE PENTRU FOLOSIRE ÎN
AGRICULTURA DURABILĂ”, September 15, 2014, Bucharest, Romania
7. Complexe slow-release fertilizers containing macro- and mezonutrients obtained by microencapsulation in core-shell urea-aldehyde structures, Constantin Neamţu, Mariana Popescu, Gheorghe Răceanu, The XXXIII National Conference of Chemistry, October 01-03, 2014, Calimanesti-Caciulata, Romania
8. Process for obtaining a slow-release microencapsulated fertilizer, Constantin Neamţu, Gheorghe Răceanu, Mariana Popescu-European Exhibition of Creativity and Innovation EUROINVENT, May 24, 2014, Iasi, Romania (Silver medal)
9. Complexe slow-release fertilizers containing macro-, mezo- and micronutrients having core-shell structures, obtained by special techniques, Constantin Neamţu, Mariana Popescu, Gheorghe Răceanu- Salonul Cercetării Românești -2014, October 15-18 2014, ROMEXPO Bucharest, Romania
10. Functional nanoporous eco-friendly polymeric materials with slow release properties for sustainable agriculture, Constantin Neamţu, Florin Oancea, Ștefan-Ovidiu Dima, Fourth International Conference of Multifunctional Hybrid and Nanomaterials, Mrch 9-13 2015, Sitges, Spain; (organized by Elsevier)


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CONTACT


Project manager: SR II. Constantin NEAMTU,
e-mail: titi_neamtu@yahoo.com