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Industry Spotlight: CBD Oil Manufacturing

Researcher Using A Dropper With Yellow Liquid

The CBD Oil industry has exploded in recent years, becoming more and more mainstream every day. Alongside that growth, a need for quality CBD oil has risen as some products are more effective than others due to the quality of the end product. Here’s a quick introduction on how quality CBD oil is extracted and how ChemTec’s products can help. 

Maximizing CBD Oil Quality

Chemical methods of extracting CBD compounds from hemp can affect final product purity. That’s why producers are turning to CO2 extraction. It’s a technique widely used in food processing because it doesn’t impart any taste to what’s being extracted. However, the process needs careful monitoring, which is where ChemTec comes in.

Extracting the CBD Compounds

Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is made by extracting compounds from the hemp plant. After harvesting, stalks and seeds go into a pressure vessel where a solvent is sprayed over them. This pulls out the CBD compounds which are then separated and prepared for sale.

The twist with CO2 extraction is that the solvent is supercritical carbon dioxide. “Supercritical” refers to it being in a strange part liquid, part gas state. This does a very effective job of pulling out the CBD compounds. The challenge is that small variations in temperature and pressure alters the mix of compounds extracted. Achieving consistency in the CBD oil demands precise control over these variables.

Managing supercritical CO2

A CO2 extraction system for CBD starts with a pressurized store of the gas. A high-pressure pump sends this through a heat exchanger which the gas exits. The precise temperature and pressure are what puts the CO2 into the supercritical state.

The supercritical CO2 flows into a pressure vessel where it draws out the CBD compounds before moving on to a pressure regulating valve. By lowering the pressure, this changes the CO2 back into a gas. At the same time, the CBD compounds separate out and are collected.

Precise Monitoring and Control

Keeping the extraction system operating between narrow limits is an excellent application for a flow monitor like ChemTec’s 125 BP Series, with 316 stainless steel rated at 3000 PSIG/ 206 BARG. The bypass design, (indicated by the “BP”) is what makes this flow monitor very sensitive to changes in flow. A magnetic piston in fluid flowing through a bypass hole. Deviations in flow rate cause a change in position of the piston, which results in a signal going out to the system controller.

The 125 BP Series of flow monitors are adjustable over a broad range and have a close on-off differential. They are available in stainless steel, brass or Teflon® and so are suitable for an application like CBD oil extraction.

Having an excess flow valve in any gas application allows you to prevent the escape of excess gas in the event of a leak, which can save costly losses. ChemTec’s EFV is an all-mechanical valve that detects a surge in pressure or rupture in line and shuts the main flow off. Keeping workers safe and the extraction system operating between safe limits are excellent applications for our excess flow valves and flow monitors. You can’t see or smell CO2, so using an EFV such as this can be extremely important.

Customization as Needed

Engineers designing a fluid control system like that for CBD oil manufacturing sometimes struggle to find the exact parts they need. When that happens ChemTec’s R&D team is here to help. With vast experience in developing flow monitoring technology, they’re able to create exactly what’s needed.