What to Consider: Short-Path Distillation Equipment

Written by on November 11, 2020 in Technology with 0 Comments

For many years different distillation processes and methods have been used to separate compounds within liquids from each other. Alcohol brewers have used it to create smooth distilled whiskeys. Today, the distillation process is used in medicines, scientific experiments, extraction of cannabinoids, the creation of beauty products, and the developing of mixtures.

Using temperature fluctuations components within mixtures separate from each other through condensation, boiling, and evaporation. Even though there are so many different distillation methods and equipment available, short-path distillation has become one of the most accessible methods available on the market.

For those wanting to achieve a high quality of purity using an ethanol extraction method, the short-path distillation machine is for you. Before you run to the nearest manufacturer, consider a few things first.

What is a Short-Path Distillation Unit?

Suitable for different lab applications, this unit is compact and uses a low-pressure purification technique. To separate different components, the unit uses different short extraction feeds within a few centimeters.

Materials, parts, holders, and instruments are all placed within close proximity of each other, allowing for the unit to take up least amount of space without compromising the quality of the distillate.

In much simpler terms, the short-path distillation unit achieves purity levels of 99% by taking up much less floor space than a larger distillation unit. Because it achieves the same results as other bigger machines, it has become quite popular amongst at-home users or smaller laboratories.

How Does it Work?

An evaporating flask is connected through a short feed tube to a chilling unit. A liquid mixture is suspended into the flask via a short tube or feed. Once the mixture is within the evaporating flask, the flask’s temperature will rise gradually creating a boiling point (set by the user). When such a mixture is exposed to a specific heat it will trigger certain components within the liquid to evaporate.

Evaporation will be sucked through a short feed using a gentle vacuum. The gas vapors are then accumulated within a condensing unit. The condensing container will then use a cooling technique that will allow the vapors to change back into liquids.

After the heating and cooling process, the distillate is divided into different containers according to mass. Having all components separated allow chemists to take samples and use different elements from the distillate.

Learn more about the process here: https://www.cannabistech.com/articles/short-path-distillation-101/. Depending on the manufacturer, all different components and parts of the unit will be placed differently. But when you are looking to purchase one, you should ensure that it at least has all the primary materials to serve its purpose.

For example, if you want to use the machine for hemp and cannabis oil distillation, then the process will allow you to separate cannabinoids, terpenoids, and THC components from each other.

Where Should I Buy Distillation Equipment?

Many users are investing in a distillation system for the main purpose of cannabis oil extraction. It’s important that the system you buy has the right parts in order for you to achieve at least 95% purity.

Make sure that you buy your new system from a credible and trustworthy manufacturer. The unit should be made from durable stainless steel that won’t rust. Overall, it should be designed and engineered to deliver clear distillate liquids from botanical extracts.

What Features Should I Look Out For?

Generally, users should look out for the following features before purchasing a system:

  • Stainless steel and durable frame construction
  • Magnetic stirring functions
  • Heating mantles that are CSA certified, fabric-lined, and a reduced heat-up time
  • Compact design
  • Heavy duty glass containers, some made from Borosilicate 3.3
  • Distillation of at least 4-5 liters per hour
  • Needs only one operator
  • A high evaporative surface area (0.27m2 is a good measurement)
  • Versatile settings and parameters
  • Vacuum using liquid nitrogen
  • High volume collection and jacketed feed tanks
  • Safety features

Check out this video for more clarity on how this system functions using different features.

With this short-path system being readily available to scientists, lab technicians, and at-home CBD enthusiasts, anyone can enjoy the fast and effective purification of their favorite botanical components.

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