The objectives of supercritical CO2 fractionation:
This technology is used in the case of complex mixtures that need to be separated and for the removal of molecules of interest or targeted compounds. This process allows extraction from liquids. Supercritical CO2 fractionation is also used for purification purposes and can be processed after a supercritical CO2 extraction as well as upstream of chromatography.
Advantages of supercritical CO2 fractionation:
Supercritical CO2 fractionation has the advantage of being a green technology, which does not pollute and produces co-products rather than waste. A notable advantage is that the process respects sensitive products such as thermally sensitive plant compounds etc. Thus it is possible to extract compounds while maintaining their original properties and benefits, as well as to preserve the loaded product. (No alteration of the components and benefits preserved.) Supercritical CO2 fractionation equipment has the advantage of eliminating post-treatment steps and optimizing the continuous extraction process. SFE Process Fractionation equipment can be coupled with SFELab & SFEProd equipment. They allow high efficiency and laboratory precision. SFE Process has developed equipment in automated or manual version, very easy to use to match the needs in R&D and education.
The operation of supercritical CO2 fractionation
The supercritical CO2 is injected via a counter-current liquid flow into a fractionation column. In the fractionation column, the supercritical CO2 is loaded with desired components, leaving out unwanted molecules. This customization is possible thanks to an orchestration of the fractionation parameters configuring density, diffusion, solvency. By using an extract reflux, the selectivity of the separation is increased.
Fractionation is used for cosmetics, chemistry, biological research, research and development in general, food processing, pharmaceuticals, petrochemicals, biofuels, polymers, perfumery.
A few examples:
Supercritical fractionation is used for formulation in the field of cosmetics.
Supercritical fractionation is also used in perfumery for the creation and elaboration of fragrances and perfumes: the olfactory profile obtained is not the same depending on the solvent used for extraction (CO2 / hexane / butane). Discover our article on the use of supercritical CO2 fractionation technology in perfumery.
For the supercritical fractionation of citrus oils and essential oils, allowing to obtain different fractions of extracts and to preserve terpenes without alteration.