Liquid-Liquid Refinement (LLR) is an often overlooked step in the purification process. Also known as “degumming,” Liquid-Liquid Refinement is the process of removing co-extracted phospholipids, sugars, proteins, and other water soluble compounds from crude extract. This important processing step improves the flavor, clarity, potency, and ultimately the marketability of your extracts. LLR also protects your high temperature processing equipment from fouling by washing out the majority of the char-forming water soluble material. Fouling reduces the efficiency of heat transfer equipment and can cause severe damage to precision rotating components such as gear pumps and the central wipers in wiped film distillation systems.
Different extraction technologies co-extract different amounts of water soluble material. Ethanol extraction co-extracts the most, because the solvent is highly polar and miscible with water.
Aptia offers several robust LLR processing solutions with batch capacities ranging from 5 to 75 kg of extract.
1. Incorporate – The system uses heat and vigorous agitation to quickly combine bulk extract and alkane solvent into a homogenous solution
2. React – A water solution is added to the reactor and thoroughly mixed with the heptane/extract solution to promote transfer of water soluble materials into the water layer.
3. Settle – Agitation is stopped and the two immiscible solutions are left to separate over the course of 3-30 minutes.
4. Separate – The water mixture containing the undesirable compounds is drained out of the bottom of the LLR system, and the solvent is transferred to a solvent recovery system.
These LLR reactor systems are specifically engineered for efficient extract refining operations. The LLR series reactors can be configured to perform other refining processes such as crystallization and winterization, which provides your operation with a valuable multitool.
Collaborate with an engineer at Aptia to specify the LLR equipment package that best suits your requirements.
Each LLR is manufactured from sturdy stainless steel, heated and cooled with an efficient dimpled heat transfer jacket, insulated for excellent temperature stability, equipped with an industrial duty agitator driven by a C1D1 Group D explosion proof motor, and equipped with a glass manway and sufficient sight glasses to make process observation quick and easy.
Contact Aptia to learn more.