Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable
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GLRPPR Sector Resource: Environmentally Friendly Cleaners for Removing Tar from Metal Surfaces

Environmentally Friendly Cleaners for Removing Tar from Metal Surfaces

As part of the mission, the Sustainable Painting Operations for the Total Army (SPOTA) working group evaluated solvents that will not impact the environment while cleaning the armament equipment, in particular the ground vehicles. ERDC-CERL researchers, in support of the SPOTA program, were tasked to conduct a preliminary study and develop a methodology to evaluate environmentally friendly cleaners that would be effective in cleaning road tar on military vehicles. The study involved an extensive literature review of commercial environmentally friendly tar removers: both products and methodologies. About 26 commercial tar removal products were identified as possible solvents for removing the tar stains from ground vehicles. In addition, laboratory coupon evaluations were conducted using three select commercial products. This report presents the results of the search for commercial tar removal solvent systems, and a laboratory evaluation of select solvent systems for removing tar from steel coupons. [PDF, 99 p.]


U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center

Resource Type:

Date of Publication:
April 2009

Associated Sectors:

GLRPPR is a member of the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange, a national network of regional information centers: NEWMOA (Northeast), WRRC (Southeast), GLRPPR (Great Lakes), ZeroWasteNet (Southwest), P2RIC (Plains), Peaks to Prairies (Mountain), WSPPN (Pacific Southwest), PPRC (Northwest).


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