A closed loop extractor is an extraction method wherein the entire process occurs within a closed vessel. in this process, the hydrocarbon solvent used to extract never comes in contact with the outside atmosphere. The solvent is recycled or looped repeatedly through the system in order to extract as much cannabinoid as possible. Closed loop extraction is extremely efficient, and, when operated properly, is exceptionally safe. Because this process is very efficient, less solvent is used, and a higher greater percentage of desired chemical compounds are separated for further refinement.
As a truly closed system, all extraction and solvent recovery processes are operated within the confines of the coded and rated tanks and lines. In this new solvation extraction process whereby the plant material is saturated with an adequate volume of a chosen solvent until all the target chemical compounds are dissolved at which time they are carried away from the plant matter using a specific flat micron size filter. When the plant matter is filtered away and the solvent is recovered for reuse using a passive process in a closed system, the process is completed.
The system is not only safer, but faster because its tanks hold all the solvent and a complete extraction could be performed in a single pass. This larger solvent tank allows much faster extraction speeds as well as being able to hold all the required solvent that allows much greater control over the contact time, contact temperature, contact pressure, and polarity of the solvent as it passes through the plant material. As the density of the plant material column can be increased as well, the production per extraction is increased as well. In that case, more plant matter could be extracted in a smaller extractor.
The accessories of closed loop extractor
01. High pressure food grade hoses: the tube used to transfer liquid phase butane
02. Solvent tank: the container used to contain solvents
03. Product tubes: the tube used to transfer production
04. Collection chamber: the container used to collect oil
05. Recovery pump:used to provide pressure to recover the solvents
06. Material column: the reactor that cannabis gets extracted
The Benefits of Closed Loop Extractors
The key closed-loop extraction benefits include safety, efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and higher quality products.
One key closed-loop extraction benefit is safety. Cannabis industry professionals regard closed-loop extraction as the safest way to extract cannabinoids.
Hydrocarbon solvents are flammable, pressurized gases. In closed-loop extraction systems, there are no opportunities for leaks if the equipment is maintained and operated at the appropriate standards. A contained system makes the risk of hazard almost non-existent. In fact, in our several thousand installations, we have never had a client have a safety issue or accident with Precision equipment.
Another closed-loop extraction benefit includes a higher-pressure capacity than open-loop extraction equipment. High pressure allows for maximum extraction of cannabinoids.
In addition to controlling temperature, closed-loop extraction systems are excellent at regulating temperature. Temperature directly controls the solubility of cannabinoids, so it’s essential to be able to control the temperature in the system.
Closed-loop extraction systems also prevent the solvent from being evaporated into the atmosphere and allow the solvent to be used many times without needing to be recharged.
One huge closed-loop extraction benefit is that hydrocarbon solvent is unable to leak out into the atmosphere. Equipment operators can reuse the solvent for extraction after extraction. This benefit leads to savings on solvent purchasing costs for businesses.
Closed-loop extraction technologies provide exceptional control over pressure and temperature, which offer an opportunity to produce the strongest, purest cannabis concentrates available. The vacuum oven removes most or all of the solvent’s residue, so many consumers also regard closed-loop extraction products as the safest to consume.
How Does A Closed-Loop System Work?
Closed-loop systems vary mechanically, depending on the solvent that will be used. However, the general method remains the same. There are three main containment areas: a vessel that contains the primary solvent, one for the cannabis plant material, and one that is used to collect the resulting extract.
Depending on the type of solvent being used, e.g. butane or carbon dioxide (CO2), the solvent may need to pass through the cannabis plant matter multiple times in order to strip off all the precious compounds, such as the cannabinoids and terpenes. For instance, butane is one of the most effective solvents and is capable of extracting almost all of the essential properties in one loop through the system. On the other hand, CO2 is a much more selective solvent and will take several more runs, and several more hours, to fully capture all the intoxicating and therapeutic properties of the cannabis plant.
The process begins with a tank of liquid solvent or a gas that is mechanically converted into a liquid solvent. The next step is to allow the liquid solvent to flow into the tank with the cannabis buds or trim. At this point, the solvent will dissolve the active compounds in the plant and create a solution. The final tank is where the resulting extract goes and where the initial solvent used is evaporated from the solution through the use of heat. When the solvent evaporates into a gas, it rises and is condensed back into the first tank. The solvent can then be reused, either on the same cannabis or for a fresh batch.
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