Let’s have a look at just how the short path wiped film Rotary Evaporators works. Where other methods employ solvents to help the extract material move or flow with the process, these systems make use of the melting points of cannabinoids instead.
These compact systems are set with a feed vessel sending extract material into a heated evaporation vessel. Inside this evaporation vessel is really a rotating wiper blade that evenly distributes the extract material to the vessel walls. The extract material only spends a short amount of time on the wall to limit heat exposure as well as any degradation to the material.
The close proximity of the condenser for the heated vessel wall provides a short path for that extract to go to. Hence the name, short path distillation process. As the wiper system moves the extraction material down through the vessel, it evaporates for the condenser which converts it back to a liquid. This liquid will then be collected at the bottom and it is now a distillate.
Heavier material like the chlorophyll, sugars, salts, and wax fractions are unable to evaporate off the surface of the evaporation vessel wall and so they travel, using the wiper blades, in to a separate container which is also towards the bottom. A separate and chilled evaporator captures the terpenes in their own individual flask.
The Short Path Distillation Process – The Short Path Distillation employs a setup that uses exactly the same principles, just minus the wiper system to distribute the extraction material.
Instead, a heated flask is the place where the extraction material is fed. Gradually, increased heat is applied for the extract material inside the feed flask. A vacuum can also be applied to assist in drawing the vapors up to the fractionating tubing. From your fractionating tubing the contents then hit the condensing tube, in which the fractions take separate paths.
Similar to the wiped film process, the weight of each and every fraction determines the collection flask.
To boost product refinement, each process can have the extract material run through them multiple times. Similar to the wiped film process, this setup is also relatively compact and lends well to multiple devices working simultaneously in a smaller space.
Benefits associated with Short Path Distillation – Flavor and “experience” are obviously more consumer-centered advantages, but for producers, there are numerous more that are included with employing either a quick path distillation process or short path wiped film distillation process.
One production advantage is one thing called “continuous feed” which is ideal for making large amounts of product for longer amounts of time with greater consistency.
Where other extraction processes use heated beakers, continuous feed also enables a better amount of scalability for your production which just isn’t most of an alternative with batch mode stills.
High evaporation rates allow for more distillates to be captured as the relatively low processing temperatures (130-180°C) play a role in the reality that there aren’t any solvents needed to move the extract material from the process.
Most significantly, this method will separate cannabis into high concentrations of THC and CBD distillates. In reality, short path distillation can lead to cannabis distillates that are 99% pure. So when you are trying to create a pure CBD product, as an example, going with the short path distillation process is one of the best methods you can use.
The compact form of short path distillation systems makes them an excellent choice to use in operations where large quantities of multiple strains must be extracted. Lastly, these machines are user friendly and therefore are largely automated inside their function.
Isolate versus Full-Spectrum – Making use of the short path distillation or wiped film distillation process results in pure isolates – whether that be THC, CBD, or other cannabinoid or terpene you may be choosing to distill.
Isolates would be the purest and many potent kind of the compound, and they also have some benefits like being completely odorless and tasteless. This is great if you use these compounds in foods or beverages, as an example, as it does not modify the taste in any respect.
However, a developing body of scientific studies have found that full-spectrum extracts have numerous benefits over isolates. The number of compounds found in cannabis work together to create what’s referred to as entourage effect, which enhances the potency of the medicinal properties.
Consequently, you may want to accept the pure isolates created from the short path distillation process and make use of reverse chromatography methods which will result in a full-spectrum extract. This can be especially useful uuubfc creating very effective CBD products, for instance, since the end product can still have no traces of THC, but will still have many of the other beneficial compounds found in cannabis.
The wonder with using Molecular Distillation is that you simply can isolate each specific compound, then combine them together in unique blends which will yield highly specific results. The possibilities are endless when you use technology as precise as short path distillation.