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Properties and Applications of Xanthan Gum

Views: 222     Author: Vickey     Publish Time: 2023-11-09      Origin: Site


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Properties and Applications of Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is a type of microbial extracellular polysaccharide that has a wide range of functions. It is a well-known industrial product that Xanthomonas campestris produces using carbohydrates as the primary raw material (such as corn starch). The fermentation engineering process is used to produce xanthan gum. It possesses a rheology that is unlike anything else, is highly soluble in water, is resistant to heat, acid, and alkali, and is compatible with a wide variety of salts. Xanthan gum has more than 20 different applications, including those of thickening, suspending agent, emulsifier, and stabilizer. Some examples of these applications include the food, petroleum, and medical industries. Xanthan gum is now the microbial polysaccharide with the largest manufacturing scale in the world, in addition to having the ability to be utilized in a variety of different business sectors.

What Are Xanthan Gum's Outstanding Qualities?

A novel kind of polysaccharide fermentation product is xanthan gum

The food industry has mostly accepted xanthan gum stabilizer since it was first used as a food additive in 1996. Owing to its unique macromolecular composition and colloidal characteristics, xanthan gum finds use as a gel thickening agent, emulsifier, stabilizer, sizing agent, film-forming agent, and more. As a result, xanthan gum is currently acknowledged on a global scale as one of the best biological glues, combining stability, emulsification, thickening, and suspension. It possesses several wonderful qualities, including:

1.Emulsification and suspension

When it comes to oil droplets and insoluble particles, xanthan gum works well for suspending them. In fact, xanthan gum may be able to support the existence of different shapes, like solid particles, droplets, and bubbles. This is because the molecules in xanthan gum sol can create super-bonded ribbon-like spiral copolymers that then form a brittle glue-like network structure. Consequently, xanthan gum exhibits excellent emulsification stability and high suspension ability when used as a food additive.


The properties of xanthan gum solution include high viscosity and low concentration. Nearly all soluble colloids have a lower viscosity than the 0.2% xanthan aqueous solution. Xanthan gum is a very powerful thickener as a result.

3.Fake plasticity

Normally, the xanthan gum solution has low shear or a high viscosity when it is static. The viscosity of xanthan gum will drastically decrease in high shear conditions, yet its molecular structure won't change. The xanthan gum solution's rebuilt viscosity will then be instantly restored after the shearing force is removed.

4.Heat stability

Temperature changes do not significantly affect the viscosity of the xanthan gum solution. Heating generally causes polysaccharides to lose some of their viscosity, but between 10 and 80°C, the viscosity of the xanthan gum solution essentially stays the same. Over a wider temperature range, an aqueous solution with low concentrations can still exhibit a steady, high viscosity.

5.Acid and alkali stability

The viscosity of the xanthan gum solution is unaffected by PH values between 5 and 10, indicating its strong stability against both acids and alkalis.

6.Salt stability

The combination of xanthan gum and salt solutions has no effect on the viscosity of the xanthan gum solution because it is miscible with a variety of saline solutions.

7.Resistance to enzymatic breakdown

Because of its sturdy double-helix structure, xanthan gum has potent anti-oxidation and anti-enzymatic properties. Protease, amylase, cellulase, and hemicellulase are just a few of the enzymes that are unable to break down xanthan gum.

Does Xanthan Gum Dissolve In Water?

People may wonder, given the widespread application of xanthan gum, whether or not it is soluble in water.

In fact, xanthan gum has a high dissolving speed in water and is water-soluble to a high degree. Additionally, because xanthan gum can be dissolved in cold water as well, the utilization of this product may effectively save time spent on intricate processing, and it is convenient for companies to use it in the production of their goods. However, because xanthan gum has a strong hydrophilicity, if water is introduced to it directly and the subsequent stirring is insufficient, the outside layer of the xanthan gum will absorb the water and expand into a micelle. This will prevent water from accessing the inner layer, which will cause the function of the xanthan gum to be disrupted. Because of this, xanthan gum needs to be utilized appropriately. In order to get the most out of xanthan gum, first the xanthan gum powder and any other dry powder auxiliary materials, like salt and sugar, need to be thoroughly combined. Next, the combined xanthan gum powder and dry powder auxiliary materials need to be slowly added to water while it is being stirred in order to produce an effective solution that can be used later on.

Applications for Xanthan Gum

1.Paint thickeners

Water-based dispersion paints, also known as acrylic paints or stable emulsion paints, are primarily made of pigments (which give the paint its color), water, other additives, and xanthan gum, which acts as a binder (a component that forms a film). The main ingredients used in the formulation of paint are additives. For the thickeners and stabilizers to contribute to the stability of the product, they must possess the necessary rheological characterization properties.

Pigment paste is created when the pigment is ground together with water and the necessary ingredients to achieve the proper granular size for colloidal dispersion. When taking into account inorganic pigments, the colloidal dispersion should produce granule sizes of between 5 and 1000 nm in order to provide the optimal covering power. Thickeners are added to pigment paste to change its viscosity.

This acts as an anti-syneresis agent to help achieve high water binding capability and stabilize the suspension during dispersion paint storage. Because xanthan gum is more pseudoplastic and thins at higher shear stress rates, it facilitates simple paint application, especially when spray painting. There are numerous thickeners available, depending on the use that is needed. The characteristics of xanthan gum are used to assist industrial applications requiring high yield values.

2.Paint stabilizers

A well-known stabilizer that dissolves in both hot and cold water is xanthan gum. It is generally inert to other compounds and is stable across a range of pH values.

Xanthan gum changes the pseudoplastic's rheological characteristics from Newtonian to high viscosity at rest and at low shear rates when added to water.

This has an impact on paint stabilization during storage, resulting in the best adhesion to the walls. Xanthan gum provides a shear rate-thinning experience when you apply paint using a brush, spray, or roller.

3.Latex paints

Xanthan gum improves the product fluidity of latex and water-based paints. Even when painting vertically, it can suspend the pigments and smooth the painting surface. Xanthan gum has the ability to regulate paint and coatings, maintain dispersion, and prevent sinking.

With regulation, it can optimally increase and modulate the performance of the concrete, reduce the amount of water it uses, and improve its fluidity. It can be used to change how long concrete, suspended solids, and ceramic glaze take to set. Xanthan gum possesses high fluidity.

By using fog reduction, you may manage the overspraying so that the glazing doesn't sink or lose its shape. In order to accommodate vivid glazes, it may also retain excellent control over various hues.

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