Benchtop/Lab Scale Cannabinoid Processing

The Lab 3 by Myers Vacuum for Cannabinoid Processing

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Centrifugal molecular distillation (or short-path distillation) is recognized as the optimal thermal separation method for heat sensitive materials like cannabis, because it poses minimal risk of damaging or destroying the product – and Myers Vacuum is the recognized leader in centrifugal molecular distillation. The key principles behind Myers Vacuum’s stills are low pressure and extremely short residence time, both of which are absolutely essential to effective cannabinoid processing. Myers stills give you maximum purity, quality, and yield.

 What is the purpose of the Myers Vacuum Centrifugal molecular distillation system for cannabis?

Centrifugal molecular distillation is a method of a thermal separation technique (molecular distillation) that works well with cannabinoids. It is a process of separation of thermally sensitive material that is typically used to increase concentration of a component. The cannabinoids have a different boiling point range in comparison to the other parts in the crude oil.  Depending on the composition of the feed material, desired output the cannabinoid concentration can exceed 90+% Purity with centrifugal molecular distillation.

Why the Lab 3 Unit by Myers Vacuum Is the Best Choice for Cannabinoid Processing

The Lab 3 system, which is specifically designed to handle thermally sensitive organic compounds, is the best choice for processing cannabinoids because it has the shortest resistance time available in the market, and it maximizes yield, purity, and quality by distilling hemp and cannabis in a low pressure range (1 to 700 X 10-3 Torr).

This is crucial to efficient cannabinoid processing, because the lower the distillation pressure, the lower the heat required to effect evaporation, and the lower the chance of damaging or destroying the product. Lower pressure also means lower energy costs, which makes the purification process more affordable and the end product more profitable.

The Lab 3’s closed loop temperature control provides the most stable product heating in the industry, allowing separation of materials with close evaporation temperatures that cannot be processed with other units.

The Lab 3 centrifugal still uses gravity to flow the feed material from degasser to the still and then on to the collection vessels. This natural vertical flow minimizes flow time by preventing holdups anywhere along the way, and it also means there is no gear pump to power, clean, or leak.

Myers Vacuum’s Lab 3 Unit Produces Maximum Purity, Quality, and Yield

Myers Vacuum’s Lab 3 unit produces maximum purity, quality, and yield of CBD and THC. The Lab 3 packs the power, efficiency, reliability, and capability of centrifugal molecular distillation into a convenient and rugged bench model that has minimal space and power requirements, but delivers maximum results.

  • Complete modular design
  • Easy setup on workbench or tabletop
  • Easy to disassemble/assemble for cleaning
  • Few moving parts, reducing maintenance cost/labor and simplifying cleaning
  • Shortestresistance time in market, reducing chance of damaging product
  • Closed loop temperature controlprovides the most stable product heating in the industry, allowing separation of materials with close evaporation temperatures that cannot be processed with other units
  • Bestvacuum configuration in the industry
  • Easy to operate and understand system controls
  • Mostly stainless steel construction with glass only as needed to observe process
  • Need to increase production? Upgrading to Myers Vacuum’sPilot 15 centrifugal molecular distillation unit is fast, simple, and cost-effective

Count on the Lab 3 for Portability, Power, and Rugged Convenience

The Lab 3 is a compact system with minimal space and power requirements. Its modular design system takes up very little space in the laboratory and allows for easy setup and moving, and because the system is primarily stainless steel with very little glass, it’s easy to clean and hard to break. All manifolds are stainless steel with standard vacuum fittings that make disassembly/assembly for cleaning fast and easy, and both vacuum pumps are built with rugged durability in mind. The mechanical pump is a direct drive rotary vane vacuum pump that’s used as a forepump (exhaust) for the diffusion (high vacuum) pump, and to rough pump the degasser, the distillation, the distillate and the residue chambers. The high vacuum pump is a heavy-duty 2″ diffusion pump that’s hardwearing and hardworking.

   The Lab 3 Process For Cannabinoid Processing

The Lab 3 flows the feed material downward in a vertical path from the degasser into the still and onto the spinning heated disc, where distillation takes place in less than 1 second. The residue is caught in a gutter that surrounds the rotor, and from there it continues flowing vertically into a collecting vessel located below the still. The distillate condenses on the outer shell of the still and flows by gravity to another collecting vessel also below the still. The Lab 3 system is designed as a batch/continuous distillation unit, and can distill batches as small as 50ml or as large as 1 liter.

A sight port allows the operator to watch the process as it occurs. Because the Lab 3 is a complete, fully valved system, the operator can isolate certain areas to make desired adjustments without completely shutting the system down.

Myers Vacuum – The Best Choice for Cannabinoid Processing

– Myers’ units have the best vacuum configuration in the industry
– Designed to be operator-friendly with controls that are easy to read, easy to understand, and easy to use
– Shortest resistance time in market, which means lowest chance of damaging your product
– Units are easy to assemble/disassemble for cleaning or relocation
– Space-saving modular design so units fit almost anywhere
– Minimal power requirements mean units function with existing power supplies – no costly refitting needed
– Sturdy stainless steel construction with minimal glass, so units are extremely durable
– Easily scalable from lab to production units, so you can expand your operation to meet your needs

   How Myers Vacuum’s centrifugal molecular distillation step is utilized with the model Lab-3:

Once properly prepared the feed material is supplied preheated to the system and loaded into the degasser. The degasser along with the residue and distillate transfer lines are heat traced either as purchased or by the customer. Once loaded into the degasser and with proper cooling media in the trap the degasser vacuum isolation valve is opened and the feed material is degassed with the mechanical vacuum pump. Once degassing is complete and rough vacuum is achieved the valve is switched for the mechanical pump to foreline and the high vacuum valve is opened. This will complete the degassing and decrease the pressure in the chamber. Then there is a needle valve located below the degasser, feed adjustment is made here and the material is fed onto a heated spinning disc in the main hi-vacuum chamber. The temperature chosen for the disc heater controls the material temperature on the disc. A portion of the material evaporates (distillate) and is condensed on a water cooled condenser plate and flows with gravity to a collection vessel, the un-distilled portion (residue) is contained in a separate gutter system that gravity feed into a separate collection vessel.

   Example of process:

Depending on the requirements a single pass can be considered final product. In other instances two passes maybe needed depending on the composition of the feed material and the desired output.

Customers experience with the Lab-3 are as follows.

   Example one

On customer is extracting using butane, doing winterization/filtration with ethanol and use a rotary evaporator to remove and recover the solvent. Then they decrease the pressure on the rotary evaporator and increase the temperature. In this step they are completing decarboxylation and removing/recovering terpenes. This material is then loaded into the degasser on the Lab-3 once degassed they are processing to an 85% pure distillate.

   Example two

Another example a customer acquires extracted material that is 53% THCA, 9% THC of winterized crude. This decarboxylation is completed in a vacuum oven that has an external cold trap. During their decarboxylation the light ends including terpenes are recovered. This material is then introduced into the degasser on the Lab-3 and processed. A temperature has been selected for the rotor heater for their first pass to distill up to 10% distillate from feed material and a second pass is completed on the residue from the first pass to produce a 75% pure distillate.

   Example Three

In another example a hemp derived CBD crude extract is being produced, the crude oil is measuring 47% CBD 3% CBC and some other minor cannabinoids for a total cannabinoid concentration of 53%. This processed crude has a total terpene measurement of 0.25%. This crude was preheated, degassed and processed on the Lab-3, as a single pass the resulting distillate was analyzed at 72.88% Pure CBD.

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