A pilot station for low pressure extraction of biomass and industrial waste materials has been constructed at the Chemical Extractives Laboratory (Fig.1). This allows the lab to provide research and development for intensive low pressure extraction in a stainless steel 10 gallon column, which is equipped with a heating jacket. The solvent for extraction is pumped into a column with a low pressure, two-cycle membrane pump. The extracted solution then flows into a pilot scale (20 liter) vacuum rotor evaporator. The removed solvent is returned into a 25 liter container. If necessary, the solvent could be pumped through molecular sieves columns for drying before the extraction process. The absorbed portion of solvent is removed from the extracted material by blowing hot air (60-130oC, at 100 psi) through the column. Gas flow runs through efficient condensers for solvent recycling.
The lab is also equipped with CO2- super critical extraction apparatus (Fig.2) which allows the scientists to provide research and development on extraction with supercritical CO2. The CO2 SC-extraction process could be fully optimized by pressure (from 3,000 - 11,000 psi) and by temperature (r.t. – 100oC).
The Chemical Extractives Lab is ready to provide any interested industrial partners with research and development on the optimization of extraction processes with different solvents, on the technology of separating value-added products from extracts, evaluation of the content of extracts, structural determination of all components of extracts. The lab will provide interested industrial partners with the necessary amount of samples, generated in extraction and separation processes.