How to rank detergent performance in less than an hour
Eva Ekerot Dec 4, ’23 ~ 4 min

How to rank detergent performance in less than an hour

Throughout the cleaning product life cycle, ranking of performance is an important type of assessment. It is also a type of assessment that can be quite time-consuming. With the right approach, however, it is possible to evaluate and rank the product performance in less than one hour. Here we tell you how.

Speed up the cleaning product performance assessment by combining the cleaning step with the analysis step

A drawback with many of the analysis methods that are traditionally used to assess cleaning product performance is that they are quite time-consuming. Typically, these methods are based on before-and-after comparison, i.e., the level of surface soiling is compared before and after the wash step where the surface is exposed to detergent solution. A faster way to rank the product performance is to run the wash step and the result assessment at the same time, rather than in sequence. This can be done with real-time surface analysis methods which measure the soil removal when the soil is exposed to the cleaning agent. Combining the wash step and result analysis makes the assessment less time-consuming than if the steps had been executed one at a time. 

Example: Using QSense technology to rank product performance in less than 1h

As an example, let us look at detergent efficiency evaluation by the QSense® technology. This technology measures changes of mass at the surface, i.e., it detects if, and how fast, the soil is dissolved and removed from the surface, Fig. 1.

During the cleaning step, the soil removal result is presented in real-time. This means that samples run in parallel can qualitatively be compared already during the wash step. From the cleaning profile data, information on i) soil swelling time, ii) soil mass removal rate, and iii) total mass removal is obtained, Fig. 1. Combined, this information will assign a performance score to each product candidate. The assigned score allows for them to be ranked and compared.

QSense cleaning profile

Figure 1. (Bottom) From left to right, a schematic illustration of a soiled QSense sensor which is exposed to the cleaning solution to be evaluated. The illustrations show how detergent penetrates the soil, which then swells and dissolves. In the illustration to the very right, the soil has been completely removed, leaving a clean sensor surface. (Top) The graph shows the cleaning profile of the detergent that is analyzed. The mass changes as a function of time reflect dynamic changes of the soil status and reveal the soil swelling, dissolution, and removal. Measuring the mass changes, the cleaning product performance can be assessed and compared with other candidates already during the wash step. The performance ranking is then obtained via the cleaning profile performance score.

Concluding remarks

Traditional methods used for cleaning product performance assessment are typically based on before-and-after comparisons and the assessment can be quite time-consuming. Using a time-resolved analysis method, such as QSense QCM-D, where the cleaning step and the data capture are performed simultaneously, the total assessment time can be shortened. A typical measurement setup, execution, and ranking assessment using QSense technology and cleaning profile analysis typically takes less than one hour. As the soil removal data is displayed in real time, an indication of the performance can be obtained already during the measurement.

Download the guide to read more about the detergent product performance evaluation and the cleaning profile analysis.



How to rank detergent perfomance in less than one hour

Learn more about cleaning product performance assessment using QSense

Guide  QSense cleaning profile  Download


  1. Olesen, K. et al., Revealing Detergent Efficiency and Mechanism by Real-Time Measurement Using a Novel and Tailored QCM-D methodology, Tenside Surfactants Detergents, 2016 Vol. 53, No. 5, pp. 488-494

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in Dec 2018 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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   QSense Omni Intuitive interface and automation to minimize hands-on time and maximize  success rate.

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