Enzymatic degradation of polyacrylamide in aqueous solution with peroxidase and H2O2 Academic Article uri icon


  • © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Polyacrylamides are often used in water-based hydraulic fracturing for natural gas and oil production. However, residual polymer remaining in the fractured rock can limit production. A novel approach for degrading partially hydrolyzed polyacrylamide (HPAM) was investigated using hydrogen peroxide and horseradish peroxidase (HRP). This sustainable HRP/H2O2 system degraded the polymer in solution, reducing its viscosity in both pure water and brine solutions. Molecular weight measurements confirmed that the viscosity reduction was due to a significant degradation of the polymer backbone and not primarily by other mechanisms such as amide hydrolysis or rearrangement, and so forth. The reduction in viscosity and molecular weight was first order with respect to H2O2 concentration. The kinetics of viscosity reduction and molecular weight are closely correlated which would allow the quicker and simpler viscosity method to help engineer future processes. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J. Appl. Polym. Sci. 2017, 134, 44560.

altmetric score

  • 1.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Gilbert, W., Johnson, S. J., Tsau, J., Liang, J., & Scurto, A. M.

citation count

  • 10

publication date

  • November 2016