WO2018215520A1 - Domestic household device for plant extraction - Google Patents

Domestic household device for plant extraction Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2018215520A1
WO2018215520A1 PCT/EP2018/063468 EP2018063468W WO2018215520A1 WO 2018215520 A1 WO2018215520 A1 WO 2018215520A1 EP 2018063468 W EP2018063468 W EP 2018063468W WO 2018215520 A1 WO2018215520 A1 WO 2018215520A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
extraction chamber
chamber
solvent
extraction
temperature
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/EP2018/063468
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Peter Selmer GADE
Original Assignee
Drizzle Ip Ivs
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Filing date
Publication date
Application filed by Drizzle Ip Ivs filed Critical Drizzle Ip Ivs
Publication of WO2018215520A1 publication Critical patent/WO2018215520A1/en

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Classifications

    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C11ANIMAL OR VEGETABLE OILS, FATS, FATTY SUBSTANCES OR WAXES; FATTY ACIDS THEREFROM; DETERGENTS; CANDLES
    • C11BPRODUCING, e.g. BY PRESSING RAW MATERIALS OR BY EXTRACTION FROM WASTE MATERIALS, REFINING OR PRESERVING FATS, FATTY SUBSTANCES, e.g. LANOLIN, FATTY OILS OR WAXES; ESSENTIAL OILS; PERFUMES
    • C11B9/00Essential oils; Perfumes
    • C11B9/02Recovery or refining of essential oils from raw materials
    • C11B9/025Recovery by solvent extraction
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A23FOODS OR FOODSTUFFS; TREATMENT THEREOF, NOT COVERED BY OTHER CLASSES
    • A23LFOODS, FOODSTUFFS, OR NON-ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES, NOT COVERED BY SUBCLASSES A21D OR A23B-A23J; THEIR PREPARATION OR TREATMENT, e.g. COOKING, MODIFICATION OF NUTRITIVE QUALITIES, PHYSICAL TREATMENT; PRESERVATION OF FOODS OR FOODSTUFFS, IN GENERAL
    • A23L27/00Spices; Flavouring agents or condiments; Artificial sweetening agents; Table salts; Dietetic salt substitutes; Preparation or treatment thereof
    • A23L27/10Natural spices, flavouring agents or condiments; Extracts thereof
    • A23L27/11Natural spices, flavouring agents or condiments; Extracts thereof obtained by solvent extraction
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01DSEPARATION
    • B01D11/00Solvent extraction
    • B01D11/02Solvent extraction of solids
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01DSEPARATION
    • B01D11/00Solvent extraction
    • B01D11/02Solvent extraction of solids
    • B01D11/0215Solid material in other stationary receptacles
    • B01D11/0253Fluidised bed of solid materials
    • B01D11/0257Fluidised bed of solid materials using mixing mechanisms, e.g. stirrers, jets
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01DSEPARATION
    • B01D11/00Solvent extraction
    • B01D11/02Solvent extraction of solids
    • B01D11/028Flow sheets
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01DSEPARATION
    • B01D11/00Solvent extraction
    • B01D11/02Solvent extraction of solids
    • B01D11/0292Treatment of the solvent
    • B01D11/0296Condensation of solvent vapours
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01DSEPARATION
    • B01D11/00Solvent extraction
    • B01D11/02Solvent extraction of solids
    • B01D11/0207Control systems

Definitions

  • the present invention relates to a device for solvent-based extraction of plant materials.
  • Active compounds for commercial products such as pharmaceuticals, perfumes, and food and beverage consumables e.g. food flavours, may be extracted from plant materials.
  • a simple and efficient extraction method is solvent extraction, where the plant material is brought into contact with a solvent, whereby compounds from the plant is extracted, and go into solution with the solvent.
  • the extracted compounds may then subsequently be recovered or isolated from the solution mixture by selectively removing the solvent part of the mixture, e.g. by evaporation or volatilization of the solvent.
  • the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process will depend on the extraction parameters.
  • the extraction parameters include: pretreatment of plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent.
  • the extraction parameters may be optimized to extract certain active compounds from a plant with a high selectivity (i.e. the extracted compounds consist mainly of the desired active compounds) and/or with a high efficiency (i.e. a high degree of the desired compounds present in the original plant are extracted).
  • Solvent extractions are traditionally performed at large industrial scale. It is difficult to do so in a domestic setting without laboratory equipment and can furthermore release flammable and potentially toxic gasses. It is also expensive in the sense that the solvent is rarely recycled. To produce commercial relevant amounts of the extracts, large volume quantities of plant material, and large quantities of flammable, and potentially explosive, solvents and corresponding volatiles, are typically involved.
  • US 9,327,210 B1 [1 ] discloses a solvent-based extraction device, where the extraction is carried out in an extraction chamber using exemplified butane as solvent.
  • the extracted solution mixture flows into a collection reservoir, and the collection reservoir is then heated to volatilize butane and separate it from the extract.
  • the volatilized butane is drawn into a solvent reservoir that is cooled, optionally through a condensing coil that is also cooled, such that the butane gas condenses to liquid.
  • the temperatures of the different parts are controlled by temperature regulated baths, and the thermal gradients between the parts regulate the flow of solvents and corresponding volatiles, within the manifold system.
  • the temperature gradients and use of butane necessitate the use of sub-room temperature cooling, such as cooling by dry ice pellets, which demands space-consuming control and safety systems.
  • the present disclosure relates to a device for solvent-based extraction of plant materials, which is highly compact, efficient, selective, flexible, and simple and safe to use.
  • the device may be configured as a domestic kitchen device for a household, with dimensions making it suitable for home-based or household extraction.
  • the present disclosure further facilitates the possibility of high efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process, such that the volume efficiency of the process is high.
  • the present disclosure further provides a device that is more simple and safe to use, thus making it suitable for a layman user to operate. For example, the device may be operated fully automatically via a user interface.
  • a first aspect of the invention relates to a device for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising:
  • an extraction chamber 2 adapted to contain the plant material and a solvent reactant, said chamber comprising at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port, at least one first circulation unit 6 configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber,
  • an evaporation chamber 7 in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, configured to receive a mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant from the extraction chamber, and further configured to evaporate at least a part of the solvent reactant from the received mixture.
  • the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
  • the device is configured as a kitchen device according to one or more standards selected from the group of: EN 60335-1 , IEC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum height of the assembly of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum height of 500, 490, 470, or 460 mm, such as a maximum height of essentially 455 mm.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum width of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum width of 500, 450, 400, 350, 300 mm, and most preferably a maximum width of 200 mm, such as a maximum width of essentially 180 mm.
  • a second aspect of the invention relates to a method for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising the steps of:
  • a third aspect of the invention relates to the device according to the first aspect for producing an extract of a plant material.
  • Figure 1 shows an embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material.
  • Figure 2 shows a schematic embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material.
  • Figure 3 shows an embodiment of the condenser in a perspective view from the top.
  • Figure 4 shows an embodiment of the condenser in perspective view from the bottom
  • Figure 5 shows an embodiment of the condenser from the top.
  • Figure 6 shows an embodiment of the condenser from the side, where the condensed liquid exits.
  • Figure 7 shows an embodiment of the condenser from the side, where the vapour enters.
  • Figure 8 shows an embodiment of the condenser from the bottom.
  • Figure 9 shows the recovered extracts from Example 1 .
  • Figure 10 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 10(A) shows the device from a left view (left cross sectional view), Figure 10(B) from a top view, Figure 10(C) from a front view, Figure 10(D) from a bottom view, and Figure 10(E) from a right view (right cross sectional view.
  • Figure 1 1 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 1 1 (A) shows the device from the left view, where a part of the device is marked by A.
  • Figure 1 1 (B) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as A in Figure 10(A).
  • the detailed area A may for example be embodied in a scale 1 :2.
  • Figure 1 1 (C) shows an isometric view of the device.
  • Figure 1 1 (D) shows the device from the right view, where a part of the device is marked by B.
  • the detailed area B may for example be embodied in a scale 2:5.
  • Figure 1 1 (E) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as B in Figure 10(D).
  • Figure 1 1 (F) shows the device from the left view, including a break out view of the evaporation chamber 7.1 , and a break out view of the extraction chamber 2.1.
  • Figure 12 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 12(A) shows an isometric view of the device.
  • Figure 12(B) shows a back view of the device.
  • Figure 12(C) shows a front view of the device.
  • Figure 1 shows an embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material.
  • the device 1 is a solvent-based extraction device, where the plant material to be extracted is placed within an extraction chamber 2 and exposed to a solvent suitable for extracting, or dissolving, one or more active compounds from the plant material.
  • the reactive solvent may also be referred to as a solvent reactant.
  • the extraction chamber comprises a detachably attached lid 11 for providing original, or unused, plant material to the extraction chamber, and/or for removing used and extracted plant material from the extraction chamber.
  • detachably attached lids include lids mounted using mechanisms such as magnetic, clip-on, screw, and bayonet socket.
  • the extraction chamber comprises a detachably attached lid 11 adapted for providing and/or removing plant material to/from the extraction chamber.
  • the extracting chamber comprises an inner sample filter 24 (shown in Figure 2) that is configured to retain any plant matter and fibers, such that the plant material is not fully dispersed within the extraction chamber.
  • the sample filter functions in a similar manner as a tea filter bag or a metal tea filter.
  • the mesh size of the sample filter is configured to allow free flow of solvent reactant, while restraining any plant matter.
  • the device comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm, more preferably between 0.1 to 30 mm, 0.2 to 2 mm, or 0.5 to 3 mm, and most preferably is essentially 1 mm.
  • the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 5 mm(10 to 5.000 microns), more preferably between 0.02 to 3 mm(20 to 3.000 microns), 0.03 to 2 mm(30 to 2.000 microns), or 0.04 to 0.1 mm (40 to 100 microns), and most preferably is essentially 0.1 mm (100 microns).
  • the extraction chamber further comprises at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate or flow into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port.
  • Figures 1 -2 show an embodiment, where the extraction chamber comprises at least two ports, wherein the first port 3 is configured as a flow inlet, and the second port 4 is configured as a flow outlet.
  • the extraction chamber of Figures 1-2 is seen to comprise a first port, or the inlet 3 (not directly visible in Figure 1 ), and a second port, or the outlet 4 suitable for transferring, circulating or flowing a fluid or liquid phase
  • the extraction chamber comprises multiple inlets and/or multiple outlets.
  • the extraction chamber comprises only one port, where said port is configured to be bidirectional, meaning that it is configured to act as both a flow inlet and a flow outlet.
  • a bidirectional port may be obtained by connecting a split tube to said port.
  • split tube is meant a tube comprising a larger lumen at a first end of the tube, wherein the larger lumen is diverted or split into two or more smaller lumens along the longitudinal length of the tube, such that the second end of the tube comprises multiple smaller lumens.
  • the larger lumen may be split by introducing splitters or spacers within the lumen. The flow of each lumen of the split tube may be controlled separately and/or dependency.
  • the flow of a first lumen of the split tube may be controlled by a first flow controller, and the flow of of a second lumen of the split tube may be controlled by a second flow controller.
  • the larger lumen at the first end of the tube may be connected to the port of the extraction chamber, and the port may act as a flow inlet when a first lumen of the split tube is applied, and the port may act as a flow outlet when a second lumen of the split tube is applied.
  • the at least one port is configured to be bidirectional thereby providing both a flow inlet and flow outlet of the extraction chamber.
  • the at least one port is in fluid communication with a split tube 3B, wherein at least a first lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow inlet 3, and at least a second lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow outlet 4.
  • the extraction efficiency and extraction selectivity with regards to the desired active compounds will depend on the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the extraction parameters
  • the device comprises a first temperature control system 5, configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the embodiment of the invention shown in Figure 1 comprises a first temperature control system 5, configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the system may have any operational temperature range, and may further be digitally and automatically controlled, and/or controlled via a user interface.
  • the system may for example be used for thermally pre-treating the plant material before the extraction process, e.g. drying the original plant material at temperatures above 50°C.
  • the system may further be used for controlling the temperature of the extraction process, thereby using a temperature where the efficiency and selectivity are advantageous. This temperature may e.g. be below 0°C.
  • the first temperature control system is embodied to comprise a thermoelectric element 15 in thermal communication with the extraction chamber.
  • the thermal contact may be in the form of a direct solid contact with the extraction chamber, e.g. the bottom of the extraction chamber, or indirectly in the form of a thermal contact to the inlet, or inlet part, of the extraction chamber. Both embodiments are indicated in Figure 1 .
  • the embodiment shown in Figure 1 further comprises a first circulation unit 6, e.g. a pumping unit, configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber.
  • the solvent reactant may be provided manually to the first circulation unit, or may be provided from a liquid reservoir, or storage chamber 10.
  • the first circulation unit 6 is fully digitally and automatically controlled, and/or controlled via a user interface.
  • the first circulation unit comprises a flow controller. Any type of flow controller may be used, including manual fluid supply, supply, gravity driven supply or pumps in combination with a valve, such as as a solenoid valver or digitally operated solenoid valve, and pumps.
  • the first circulation unit comprises one or more flow controllers selected from the group of: displacement pumps, peristaltic pumps, gas pressure driven pumps, gravity driven pumps in combination with a valve, such as a solenoid valver or digitally operated solenoid valve.
  • the circulation unit may further be reversibly operable, whereby it may either transfer solvent reactant to the extraction chamber, or transfer liquid or fluid away from the extraction chamber.
  • the amount of solvent reactant present within the extraction chamber may be controlled, and indirectly the duration of the solvent exposure may be controlled by the relationship between the flow inlet and flow outlet.
  • a reversibly operable circulation unit is further advantageous, when the at least one port is operated as both a flow inlet and flow outlet, or when the circulation unit is configured as a stirrer as described in following parts.
  • the extraction process occurring within the extraction chamber results in two products: solid, used and extracted plant material, and a liquid solution, or liquid mixture, comprising the solvent reactant and the extracted compounds.
  • the extracted compounds may be partially or fully isolated or recovered within an evaporation chamber 7, where the the evaporation chamber is in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, and configured to receive the solution, or mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant, from the reaction chamber.
  • Figure 1 shows an
  • a second circulation unit 16 may be included, such as a pumping unit e.g. a displacement pump, for controlling the flow from the extraction chamber to the evaporation chamber.
  • the second circulation unit may comprise any type of flow controller, including manually operated, gravity driven or pumps in combination with a valve, such as as a solenoid valve or digitally operated solenoid valve, and pumps, such as gas driven pumps, displacement pumps, and peristaltic pumps.
  • a pumping unit e.g. a displacement pump
  • the second circulation unit may comprise any type of flow controller, including manually operated, gravity driven or pumps in combination with a valve, such as as a solenoid valve or digitally operated solenoid valve, and pumps, such as gas driven pumps, displacement pumps, and peristaltic pumps.
  • the extracted compounds are recovered within the evaporation chamber by separating the solution, or mixture, into different phases. This may be obtained by heating the liquid mixture of extracted compounds and solvent reactant to a temperature at which the solvent reactant enters the gaseous phase. Another option is to use vacuum to evaporate the solvent. Thus, the solvent in a gaseous phase is separated from the liquid extract. It is therefore essential that the boiling point of the solvent reactant is lower than the boiling point of the extracted compounds that is to be recovered.
  • An example of a suitable solvent reactant is an alcohol. Most commercially available alcohols may have a boiling point that is lower than the boiling point of essential oil compounds extracted from plant material.
  • the phase separation, and the degree of phase separation may be controlled by a second temperature control system 8, configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture within the evaporation chamber.
  • the device comprises a second temperature control system 8 and/or a vacuum control system configured for evaporating at least a part of the solvent from the received mixture.
  • the second temperature control system is embodied to comprise a heating element 8, such as a 230VAC heating band, in thermal communication with the extraction chamber, e.g. placed in direct contact with the chamber walls.
  • Other examples of systems configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture within the evaporation chamber include: vacuum control systems, heated oil bath, induction, and any combinations thereof.
  • the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached container 12, adapted for containing the separated liquid.
  • the container may be in the shape of a removable cap.
  • detachably attached containers include containers mounted using mechanisms such as magnetic, clip-on, screw, and bayonet socket.
  • the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached container 12 adapted for containing and recovering the extract from the plant material, and optionally a part of the solvent reactant.
  • the container has the shape of a removable cap, such as a screw cap, bayonet socket or clip.
  • the separated liquid recovered within the container advantageously comprises both extracted compounds and a part of the solvent reactant.
  • the viscosity of the extracted compounds will typically be much higher than the viscosity of the solvent reactant.
  • the viscosity of the recovered liquid product may be controlled by varying the amount of solvent reactant comprised within the recovered product.
  • the embodiment of the device shown in Figure 1 may be fully digitally and
  • Figure 2 shows an embodiment of the invention, where the processes occurring in all parts and chambers are controlled based on electrical inputs from e.g. temperature sensors.
  • the extraction process is carried out in a closed-cycle device, where the interface with the user is limited to the user interface, and to providing plant material to the extraction chamber, and removing the extract from the evaporation chamber.
  • a closed-cycle device may be obtained by recycling the solvent reactant within the device.
  • Figures 1-2 show embodiments of the device, where recycling of the solvent reactant is obtained by including a condenser 9.
  • the condenser is in fluid
  • the gaseous solvent reactant formed within the evaporation chamber is transferred to the condenser, where it is condensed to the liquid state.
  • the driving force for the transfer may be the vapour pressure and/or differences in the chemical potential.
  • the formed condensate is identical to the original solvent reactant, and may be transferred to the extraction chamber or the liquid reservoir via the first circulation unit.
  • the solvent reactant may be recycled and reused, and the device forms a closed- circle device.
  • the same plant material placed in the extraction chamber may therefore be subjected to multiple successive extraction cycles, i.e. multiple recycles of the solvent reactant.
  • the original supply of solvent reactant may be reused for different batches of plant materials.
  • extraction cycle is meant the event or process, where the plant material in the extraction chamber is exposed to solvent reactant for a defined period of time. After the exposure, the solvent reactant is drained from the extraction chamber, and transferred to the evaporation chamber, and subsequently transferred to the condenser, optionally the liquid storage chamber.
  • the plant material in the extraction chamber is exposed to a solvent reactant entering the extraction chamber through the port inlet.
  • the solvent reactant for the second extraction cycle may comprise entirely or partly of the first original supply of solvent reactant.
  • the operation of the device may include a first supply of solvent reactant, and the user of the device thus have minimum contact with the solvent reactant, when only a first supply of solvent is needed, and said first supply is recycled for subsequent extraction cycled.
  • the recycling may be repeated for any number of cycles.
  • the device may be supplied with a second, third, and so forth supply of new solvent, for a following extration process within the extraction chamber.
  • more than 50 vol% of the first original supply of solvent is recycled, more preferably more than 75 vol% or more than 90 vol% of the solvent, and most preferably essentially all of the original supply of solvent is recycled.
  • the condenser and/or extraction chamber will in most cases not operate continuously.
  • the condensate from the condenser can be stored in a storage chamber.
  • the condenser is then in fluid communication 21 with the evaporation chamber as illustrated in Figure 1.
  • Figure 2 further shows an embodiment of the invention, where the condensate may be stored in a storage chamber, or liquid reservoir, placed in the line between the condenser and the first circulation unit.
  • the device comprises a condenser 9 in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber, and configured for receiving and condensing the evaporated solvent reactant.
  • the device is configured for recycling the condensate from the condenser to the extraction chamber, thereby providing recycled solvent reactant to the extraction chamber.
  • the device comprises a storage chamber 10 in fluid communication with the condenser and the first circulation unit, and adapted for storing the condensate from the condensor.
  • a compact and efficient device has the advantage of requiring smaller amounts of plant material and being easier to maintain and service.
  • a compact and efficient device may be obtained by assembling and sizing the parts of the device in a suitable and energy efficient manner.
  • the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
  • the device is configured as a kitchen device according to a standard, such as a standard related to the size and safety requirements of the kitchen device.
  • a standard such as a standard related to the size and safety requirements of the kitchen device.
  • Several standards for kitchen devices or equipment exist including: EN 60335-1 , I EC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082.
  • the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
  • the device is configured as a kitchen device according to one or more standards selected from the group of: EN 60335-1 , IEC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082.
  • the device may be placed on a kitchen working table and/or below a hanging kitchen cupboard.
  • base area or “footprint” is meant the area defined by the width and depth of the device .
  • width is meant the dimension along the longitudinal direction of a planar kitchen working table, and by the term “depth” is meant the dimension along the lateral direction of a planar kitchen working table.
  • depth and “length” may be used synonymous.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum height of the assembly of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum height of 500, 490, 470, or 460 mm, such as a maximum height of essentially 455 mm.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum volume of 1000 L, more preferably a maximum volume of 500, 300, 200, 100, 50, or 40 L, and most preferably a maximum volume of 30 or 20 L, such as a maximum volume of essentially 19.5 L.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum base area or footprint of 1 m 2 , more preferably a maximum base area of 0.6, 0.4, or 0.2 m 2 , and most preferably a maximum base area of 0.1 , or 0.05 m 2 , such as a maximum footprint of essentially 0.0424 m 2 .
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum width of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum width of 500, 450, 400, 350, 300 mm, and most preferably a maximum width of 200 mm, such as a maximum width of essentially 180 mm.
  • the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum depth or length of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum depth of 500, 490, 450, 400 mm, and most preferably a maximum depth of 300 mm, such as a maximum length of essentially 320 mm.
  • Solvent extraction of plant material may be performed with a wide range of solvents, such as: alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, substituted alkanes, alcohols, ketones, organic acids, esters, dimethylsulfoxide, and dimethylformamide.
  • solvents include: water, methanol, ethanol, propanol, isopropanol, butanol, butane, propane, heptane, hexane, chloroform, dichloromethane, tetrachloromethane, acetone, formaldehyde, acetic acid, alcohols.
  • Commonly known solvents with high efficiency are toxic and explosive solvents or greenhouse gasses, such as butane, propane, C02 and gasoline.
  • suitable alcohols where high efficiencies may be obtained in a compact device, include ethanol and
  • isopropanols such as 1 -propanol and 2-propanol.
  • the properties of the extraction chamber are therefore advantageously compatible with alcohols in solid, liquid and/or gaseous state.
  • the walls of the extraction chamber are made of a material that is non-reactive with the alcohol, and the walls have a density such that they may contain the alcohol.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain a solvent reactant that is an alcohol, preferably selected from the group of: ethanol, isopropanol, 1 -propanol and 2-propanol.
  • the user has a minimum contact with the solvents and associated volatiles.
  • a closed-cycle device where the solvent reactant is recycled is advantageous.
  • a fully automated system may further be advantageous.
  • the device comprises a user interface configured to control the temperature profile of the extraction chamber, and optionally control the temperature profile of the evaporation chamber, and the operation of the condenser, and circulation unit(s).
  • the extraction process involves that some parts of the device may have a temperature above room temperature (e.g. the evaporating chamber, and heating elements), some parts of the device may have a temperature below room temperature (e.g. the extraction chamber), and some parts of the device will have room temperature (e.g. condenser and storage chamber). Furthermore, the user has to interact with some parts of the device (e.g. the extraction chamber lid 11 and the container for the extract 12).
  • room temperature e.g. the evaporating chamber, and heating elements
  • some parts of the device may have a temperature below room temperature (e.g. the extraction chamber)
  • some parts of the device will have room temperature (e.g. condenser and storage chamber).
  • the user has to interact with some parts of the device (e.g. the extraction chamber lid 11 and the container for the extract 12).
  • the parts of the device, which the user has to interact with are made of a thermally insulating material or materials with a low thermal conducitivity. It is further advantageous that the user may easily and visibly identify the parts, which are safe to interact with.
  • the parts which the user may interact with may be made of, or covered by, wood, in contrast to the other parts which may be made of, or covered by, a metal, such as aluminium.
  • the lid 11 and/or the container 12 comprises a thermally insulating material, such as a material with a thermal conductivity below 5, 3, or 1 W/(m K) at 25 °C, and optionally is made of wood.
  • the extraction chamber is advantageously dimensioned to a minimum size. Furthermore, for home-based extraction, the extraction chamber should be dimensioned such that the consumables, i.e. a batch of plant material, are manageable and easy to handle. However, the extraction chamber should also be dimensioned such that a suitable amount of extract can be produced from a single batch of plant material, where the batch of plant material may be subjected to one or more extraction cycles.
  • the suitable batch size of a plant material will depend on the type of plant and the extraction efficiency.
  • plant materials include: peppermint, cannabis, valerian root, kava kava, opium poppies, psilocybin mushrooms, and examples of the active compounds that are extracted from the plants include: THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD (cannabidiol), menthol, kavalactones, opium, and psilocybin.
  • THC tetrahydrocannabinol
  • CBD can beannabidiol
  • menthol kavalactones
  • opium opium
  • psilocybin examples of the active compounds that are extracted from the plants.
  • a suitable batch size for most plant materials is below 50 g of plant material, and in many cases below 10 g.
  • THC and CBD extract a batch size of 10 g cannabis will result in 1 .5-2 g of THC and CBD extract, which in many cases correspond a the weekly consumption of a household.
  • Another suitable batch size for most plant materials is below 300 g of plant material, and in many cases below 50 g. If the concentration of desired compounds, such as THC or CBD is in the range of 20%, and the extraction efficiency is 80%, a batch size of 20 g cannabis will result in 3,2 g of THC and CBD contents in an extract, which in many cases correspond a the weekly consumption of a household.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 50 g of plant material, more preferably below 40, 30, or 20 g of plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 10 g of plant material.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 300 g of dried plant material, more preferably below 100, 50, or 30 g of dried plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 20 g of plant material.
  • the extracting chamber comprises an inner sample filter 24 (shown in Figure 2) that is configured to retain any plant matter and fibers, such that the plant material is not fully dispersed within the extraction chamber.
  • the sample filter functions in a similar manner as a tea filter bag or a metal tea filter.
  • the mesh size of the sample filter is configured to allow free flow of solvent reactant, while restraining any plant matter.
  • the device comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm, more preferably between 0.1 to 30 mm, 0.2 to 2 mm, or 0.5 to 3 mm, and most preferably is essentially 1 mm.
  • the mesh filter is of between 0.01 to 50 mm(10 to 50.000 microns), more preferably between 0.02 to 30 mm(20 to 30.000 microns), 0.03 to 2 mm(30 to 2.000 microns), or 0.04 to 0.1 mm (40 to 100 microns), and most preferably is essentially 0.1 mm (100 microns).
  • the suitable size of the extraction chamber will also depend on the amount of solvent, and the associated ratio between the plant material and the solvent reactant.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 700 mL of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 500 mL, and most preferably between 150 to 300 mL, such as 200 mL.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : mL solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:200.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 2000 mL of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 700 mL, and most preferably between 150 to 300 mL, such as 200 mL.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : mL solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:100.
  • the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process may be improved, the better the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled. Furthermore, the energy efficiency of the device is improved if the extraction chamber is compact, and has heat conducting parts that are insulated. To further optimize the energy efficiency and compactness of the device, it is advantageous that the wall thickness of the extraction chamber and insulation are optimized.
  • the extraction chamber walls and the associated insulating layer are made of materials that are compatible and do not react with the solvent reactant in case of contact. It was found that polymeric foams, such as polyurethane (PUR) foam, show excellent resistance upon contact with alcohols, such as ethanol.
  • PUR polyurethane
  • Example 5 further describes the resistance of the insulating material towards the solvent reactant.
  • Figure 2 shows an embodiment of the extraction chamber, comprising an inner wall 13 of a high thermally conducting material, such as a metal, and an outer wall or layer of insulating material. The thermal properties of the material will ensure a minimal temperature gradient within the extraction chamber, or inner chamber, and the solvent present within the chamber.
  • the embodiment further illustrates that the vertical walls of the extraction chamber are covered by an insulating layer.
  • the extraction chamber comprises walls 13 of a thermally conductive material, such as a material with a thermal conductivity above 50 W/(m K) at 25 °C, or more preferably above 100 W/(m K) at 25 °C, such as aluminium (Al), surface treated aluminium, brass, and copper.
  • the walls of the extraction chamber have a thickness between 1 mm to 10 mm, more preferably between 2-8 mm, or 3-7 mm, and most preferably is essentially 5 mm.
  • a thermally insulating material 14 such as a material with a thermal conductivity below 30 W/(m K) at 25°C or more preferably below 10 or 5 W/(m K), such as polyurethane (PUR), a foam of PUR, aerogel, glasswool, rockwool, styrofoam, and any combination thereof.
  • PUR polyurethane
  • the vertical walls of the extraction chamber are covered with the insulating material.
  • the thickness of the insulating material is between 0.5-5 cm, more preferably between 1 -4 cm, or 1-3 cm, and most preferably is essentially 2 cm.
  • the extraction chamber is advantageously closed in a leak-tight manner, and most of the chamber walls are insulated.
  • Figures 1 -2 show embodiments of the invention, where the extraction chamber comprises a lid 11 in the top.
  • the lid may be fixed in a leak-tight manner by use of a bayonet socket, screw or clip mechanism.
  • the extraction chamber is configured to be closed in a leak-tight manner.
  • the extraction chamber comprises a lid comprising a thermally insulating material.
  • a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is in thermal communication with a thermoelectric element comprised within the first temperature control system.
  • a thermoelectric element comprised within the first temperature control system.
  • thermal communication is meant a contact interface with an very small thermal resistance, such as an interface having a thermal conductivity above 10 or 16 W/(m K).
  • thermal communication is obtained when the thermal resistance corresponds to the thermal resistance of a 1 cm steel plate having a thermal resistance of 2 K/W.
  • At least one of the inner walls of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with the first temperature control system, such as a peltier element.
  • a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with the temperature control system, such as a peltier element.
  • the part of the extraction wall that is not in thermal communication with a part of the first temperature control system is insulated in a similar manner as the other walls.
  • a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber may be covered with a thermally insulating material, or a thermal break, for example in the shape of a ring-shaped disk.
  • the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is partly covered with an insulating material 30, as illustrated in Figure 10.
  • the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process is affected by the extraction temperature, and thus the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the optimal temperature will further vary depending on the plant material and the active compounds desired for extraction. Most solvents are more selective, at a low temperature.
  • the extraction temperature is advantageously below 0°C, and preferably around -10°C, to produce the highest efficiency and selectivity. It may further be advantageous that the temperature of the extraction is varied during the extraction process. The associated temperature gradients may result in a higher efficiency, corresponding to higher extraction yields.
  • the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -20°C to 0°C, more preferably between -15°C to -5°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C. In a further embodiment, the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
  • the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -40°C to 0°C, more preferably between -15°C to -5°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C. In a further embodiment, the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
  • the efficiency and selectivity of the process may further be determined by any pre- treatment of the plant material.
  • the system may be further used for thermally pre-treating the plant material before the extraction process, e.g. drying the original plant material at temperatures above 50°C.
  • the first temperature control system may be used for both controlling the temperature of the extraction process and pre-treatment process, thereby using a temperature where the efficiency and selectivity are advantageous.
  • the temperature control system must be configured to enable a temperature profile over time, including at least two pre-defined set-temperatures, such as a first set temperature that is above 0 °C, and a second set temperature that is below 0 °C.
  • the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -20°C to 99°C, more preferably between -20°C to 60°C, -15°C to 50°C, -5°C to 40°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C, or 60°C.
  • the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
  • the temperature profile comprises at least two periods with different temperature sets, such as a first period with a temperature set between 20°C to 99°C, and a second period with a temperature set between -20°C to 0°C.
  • the first temperature control system is advantageously dimensioned to a minimum size.
  • a minimum size may be obtained by configuring the same system to be operable in wide temperature range, including the capability of acting as both heating element and cooling element.
  • thermoelectric element such as a peltier element
  • larger extraction chambers inherently requires more powerful and space-requiring temperature controls, such as compressor cooling, which are operated at high-watts and takes up more volume.
  • a large operable temperature range including heating and cooling, may be obtained with a peltier element, since the peltier element act as a thermal pump, where the thermal flux may be controlled by the direction of the provided electric current.
  • the peltier element will switch from being a heating element to being a cooling element.
  • it may be advantageous to include two or more thermoelectric elements, such as a double stacked peltier element.
  • the peltier element may further be combined with a heat sink which may be operated with forced air, in the form of an air fan 23 as shown in Figure 2, or operated by passive air.
  • the first temperature control system comprises at least one thermoelectric element 15 in thermal communication with the extraction chamber.
  • the thermoelectric element is configured for being both heating and cooling element.
  • the thermoelectric element is configured as respectively a heating element and a cooling element depending on the direction of the provided thermoelectric current.
  • the thermoelectric element is a peltier element, and optionally is a multiple of stacked peltier elements, such as a double stacked peltier element.
  • Figure 2 shows an embodiment of a device, where the thermoelectric element is a peltier element in thermal communication with the extraction chamber. This is obtained by the peltier element forming a solid contact with the thermally conducting bottom wall of the extraction chamber, which is not insulated.
  • at least a part of one of the inner walls of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with a peltier element.
  • thermoelectric element may be in thermal communication with the extraction chamber via the solvent reactant entering the extraction chamber.
  • Figure 1 shows an embodiment of the device, where the thermoelectric element may be in thermal contact with an inlet tube, connected to the inlet port of the extraction chamber.
  • the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled by controlling the temperature of the inlet, or in-line, solvent reactant.
  • thermoelectric element is in thermal communication with the solvent reactant in-line, i.e. before the solvent reactant enters the extraction chamber.
  • all walls, including the bottom wall, of the extraction chamber are advantageously covered by an insulating material, thus enabling improved temperature control and temperature stability within the extraction chamber.
  • the second alternative is advantageously combined with a lower thickness of the insulating material covering the extraction chamber wall.
  • thermoelectric element and the extraction chamber is a solid contact between the thermoelectric element and a wall of the extraction chamber, optionally at least a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber.
  • the thermoelectric element is in thermal contact with the solvent reactant entering the at least one port or inlet of the extraction chamber.
  • the thickness of the insulating material covering the extraction chamber walls is between 0.5 to 3 cm, more preferably 0.5 to 2 cm, such as essentially 2 cm, or 0.5 to 1 cm.
  • the peltier element may be mounted on a thermally conductive heat sink. The heat sink may be cooled using an air fan 23 that forces air through the heat sink and removes the heat generated by the Peltier element, as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the peltier element comprises a thermally conductive heat sink, such as an extruded aluminium heat sink.
  • a thermal resistance may be included from the hot side of the heatsink to air.
  • a thermal resistance of 0.15 W/K may be used.
  • the peltier element further comprises a thermal resistance.
  • thermoelectric element To improve the assembly and thermal communication between the thermoelectric element and the extraction chamber, it may be advantageous to cover the surfaces of the peltier element with a small amount of thermal grease on both sides before the chamber is mounted, which may improve the performance of the Peltier element.
  • the inner chamber is pressed slightly against the Peltier element and the heat sink. A compression force of 5 N is optimal.
  • the peltier element according to the invention may act as both a heating and cooling element. This may be obtained by connecting the peltier element electrically in such a way that the current flow can be reversed. In reversing the current the Peltier can either cool the inner chamber or heat it.
  • Extraction chamber - Flow control The efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process is affected by both the type of solvent reactant, and the energy state of the solvent present. Thus, higher efficiency, or extraction yield, may be obtained if the solvent reactant is in a higher energy state, such as an agitated state. It may therefore be advantageous to have a stirrer placed within the extraction chamber.
  • stirrers such as a magnetic stirrer, requires increased dimensions, and further increase the cost and complexity of the device.
  • a compact and efficient extraction chamber may be obtained by including a stirrer for stirring the content of the extraction chamber, where the stirrer is placed outside the extraction chamber.
  • stirring or agitation of the content in the extraction chamber may be obtained by pumping liquid in and out of the inlet of the extraction chamber.
  • Figure 2 shows an embodiment of a stirrer placed outside the extraction chamber, where the first circulation unit, which is placed outside the extraction chamber, acts as a stirrer.
  • the first circulation unit may be a reversible displacement pump, such as a reversible peristaltic pump, and the stirring is then obtained by pumping liquid repeatedly, and optionally with a high frequency, in and out of the inlet of the extraction chamber.
  • Sufficient stirring may be obtained by operating the reversible pump with an in and out flow between 50-150 mL/min. Sufficient stirring may further be obtained by having a frequency of flow inversions between 1 -60 per minute. Sufficient stirring may further be obtained by pumping a smaller volume of liquid in and out of the inlet, such as below 25 ml_. To avoid contamination of the solvent reactant supply, such as the storage chamber, it is advantageous that the pump is restrictively operated in the reverse mode, i.e. only a pre-defined volume of liquid is pumped out of extraction chamber, such that only the communication line between the pump and extraction chamber is filled with the fluid from the extraction chamber.
  • the second circulation unit may also be configured for agiation.
  • Example 1 further describe how agitation generated by the first circulation unit, in the form of a peristaltic pump, may increase the extraction yield, or efficiency, by up to 33% compared to the extraction yield, where the pump was not activated.
  • the device comprises a stirrer for stirring the content of the extraction chamber.
  • the stirrer is placed outside the extraction chamber.
  • the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer.
  • the first circulation unit is a reversible displacement pump, optionally a reversible peristaltic pump.
  • the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the flow optionally is between 50-150 mL/min, more preferably between 70-130 mL/min, or 60-120 mL/min, and most preferably of essentially 100 mL/min.
  • the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the volume of the flow is below 20 mL, more preferably below 10 mL, and most preferably essentially 5 mL.
  • the frequency of reversible in and out flows corresponds to between 1 -60 flow inversions per minute, more preferably between 10-30 flow inversions per minute.
  • the volume of the reversible liquid flow is below 25 mL, more preferably below 10 mL, and most preferably below 5 mL.
  • the second circulation unit is reversed and air is pumped from the evaporation chamber and into the extraction chamber. This causes agitation and increases the extraction efficiency.
  • the flow rate may be between 10 to 500 mL / min, more preferably between 50 and 250 and preferably 100 mL / min.
  • the flow from the extraction chamber outlet may be controlled by a second circulation unit 16, which may be a second displacement pump or peristaltic pump.
  • the second circulation unit is a non-reversible pump, such that volatiles from the evaporation chamber cannot be transferred to the extraction chamber by accident.
  • the device comprises a second circulation unit 16 configured to control the flow between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the evaporation chamber.
  • a filter 17 may be placed adjacent to the extraction chamber outlet. Furthermore, the plant material may be placed in a sample filter 24, for example in the same manner as a tea bag, to minimize the risk of solid plant material being transferred to the evaporation chamber.
  • the sample filter may e.g. be a metallic filter, or any other material that is stable in the solvent and the temperature conditions.
  • the device comprises a second filter 17 configured for filtering the flow exiting the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber, optionally placed between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the second circulation unit.
  • the secondary filter may be placed in-line within the communication line, optionally in a removable manner, such that it may be inserted after need.
  • the second filter may filter and capture plant material that are freely dispersed within the extraction chamber.
  • the device advantageously comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber.
  • the second filter has a mesh size of between 1 to 900 microns, more preferably between 10 to 500, 50 to 300, or 70 to 200 microns, most preferably essentially 100 microns.
  • the solvent reactant supplied to the extraction chamber may be transferred from a liquid reservoir, such as the storage chamber illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the solvent is injected slowly, and at a rate where the temperature of the solvent is close to the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the solvent is adjusted to a predefined temperature in line, before it is injected into the extraction chamber.
  • the solvent mixture, or solution, formed within the extraction chamber may be transferred, or drained, from the extraction chamber outlet to the evaporation chamber in a fluid communication line, such as a tube 16, 20 as shown in Figure 2.
  • the transfer may be automatically controlled by the liquid pressure, or by using a valve.
  • the extraction chamber outlet is placed at a lower portion of the extraction chamber, such as near the bottom, of the extraction chamber, as illustrated in Figures 1-2.
  • the extraction chamber outlet is placed at a lower portion of the extraction chamber.
  • the valve may be controlled and operated from the central processing unit.
  • the extraction chamber outlet may be in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber, via a pipe and a valve. When the valve is open, the liquid from the extraction chamber is drained fully into the evaporation chamber.
  • the extraction chamber outlet is in fluid communication with a valve, such as an electrically operated valve.
  • the transfer or draining is controlled by the liquid pressure within the extraction chamber. This may be obtained when a lower portion of the extraction chamber is connected to a pipe that is shaped to function like a siphon valve, as illustrated in Figure 1 .
  • the lowest point of the siphon valve is advantageously at least 20 mm below the lowest liquid level in the evaporation chamber.
  • a compact and energy efficient evaporation chamber may be obtained by restricting the operation of the evaporation of the chamber to when there is solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber.
  • the presence of solvent reactant may be effectively detected by monitoring the temperature of the chamber. As long as there is solvent present, the temperature of the evaporation chamber will be maintained at the boiling temperature of the solvent. When all solvent present has been
  • the phase change will be associated with a rapid temperature increase.
  • the operation of the evaporation chamber may be stopped.
  • the temperature of the evaporation may be monitored by a thermal sensor connected, or placed in direct thermal contact, with the chamber, for example placed on an externally surface of the evaporation chamber.
  • the second temperature control system is configured to operate when there is solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber. In a further embodiment, the second temperature control system is configured to stop operating when there is no solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber.
  • the chamber advantageously comprises a thermally conductive material that further does not react with the solvent reactant, i.e. is chemically inert to the solvent reactant and corresponding volatiles.
  • the evaporation chamber comprises materials selected from the group of: copper, brass, aluminum, iron, and any combinations thereof.
  • the temperature of the evaporation chamber may be controlled by a second temperature control system, configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture, or solution, entering the evaporation chamber from the extraction chamber.
  • the second temperature control system may comprise at least one heating element.
  • the heating element is in thermal contact with a larger portion of the external surface wall of the evaporation chamber.
  • the heating element may be a heating band 8 as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the amount of power used in the heating element may be controlled from a central processing unit.
  • the evaporation chamber may comprise a thermal sensor that detects the temperature of the Evaporation chamber via the central processing unit.
  • the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached lid, such as cap which may be sealed with a bayonet socket, optionally made of a thermally conductive material.
  • the cap may further be connected via an O-ring, to create a further liquid-tight seal, thereby preventing liquid from leaving the device prematurely.
  • a compact and energy efficient device may further be obtained by efficiently transferring the formed volatiles out of the evaporation chamber.
  • the transfer may be driven by differences in vapor pressure or differences in chemical potential, from the evaporation chamber to the condenser. It is therefore advantageous that the volatiles do not condense within the fluid communication 21 between the evaporation chamber and condenser.
  • the fluid communication line affects the temperature and vapor pressure to a minimum, e.g. by being relatively insulating and being dimensioned with a relatively large lumen.
  • the communication line is made of a material having a low thermal conductivity to avoid creating a thermal bridge between the evaporation chamber and the condenser.
  • the communication line is made of material that is resistant towards the gaseous solvents at various pressures, such as atmospheric pressure.
  • gaseous solvents that the communication line should tolerate include: ethanol with a boiling point of 78°C, and isopropanol with a boiling point of 80°C.
  • the fluid communication between the evaporation chamber and the condenser is a tube, wherein the tube material has a thermal conductivity below 410 W/(m K) at 25 °C, more preferably below 50 W/(m K) at 25 °C.
  • the tube material is selected from the group of: copper, steel, stainless steel, and polyethylene, and more preferably is stainless steel.
  • a compact and energy efficient condenser may be obtained by restricting the operation of the condenser to when there is volatiles present within the condenser.
  • phase changes are associated with a rapid temperature change.
  • the run out and absence of volatiles within the condenser will be associated with a rapid temperature change.
  • the condenser is configured to operate when there are volatiles present.
  • a thermal sensor is in thermal connection with the condenser, for example placed directly on an external surface of the condenser body, which may be of aluminium.
  • Figures 3-8 show embodiments of a compact and efficient condenser.
  • Figure 3 shows an embodiment in a perspective view from the top.
  • Figure 4 shows the embodiment in perspective view from the bottom.
  • Figure 5 shows the embodiment from the top.
  • Figure 5 shows the embodiment from the side, where the condensed liquid exits, and
  • Figure 6 shows the embodiment from the side, where the vapor enters.
  • Figure 8 shows the embodiment from the bottom.
  • the embodiment shown in Figure 3 comprises an adjustable speed fan 18 for air supply, and a heatsink 19, which may be formed by extrusion.
  • the heatsink is a plate having a corrugated surface side, and a planar surface side. The corrugated surface side is facing the air supply, or speed fan, whereby the higher surface area ensures an efficient cooling.
  • the vapor to be condensed flows within an opening of the condenser.
  • the opening where the phase transformation from vapor to condensate occurs is also referred to as the condenser.
  • the opening is advantageously placed at the corrugated surface side of the heat sink.
  • the condenser may be said to be placed inside the volume of the heatsink. This is in contrast to a heatsink, where the condenser is placed at an external surface of the heat sink, i.e. outside the effective volume of the heat sink.
  • the condenser 9 is an air cooled condenser.
  • the air cooled condenser may be operated passively or actively by use of e.g. an air fan.
  • the condenser comprises an air fan 18 opposing a heat sink 19 with a corrugated surface side and a planar surface side, and wherein the condenser is configured such that condensate is formed at the corrugated surface side of the heat sink.
  • the corrugated surface side of the condenser may also be described as an array of cooling fins that allows heat to dissipate from the body, as illustrated in Figure 3.
  • the gaseous and liquid solvent mixture flow through the opening, or hole through the condenser, whereby the mixture dissipates heat to the surrounding metal.
  • the hole needs to be large enough to avoid clogging of the solvent.
  • the condenser is further advantageously dimensioned to dissipate enough energy from the gaseous solvent to condense it into a liquid close to room temperature.
  • the opening of the condenser is between 1 to 20 mm, more preferably between 5 to 15 mm, and most preferably essentially 8 mm.
  • a compact and efficient condenser may be obtained by mounting the condenser in an upright position, such that the condensed solvent will trickle freely down into the liquid reservoir, such that no further flow controls are needed.
  • the efficiency of the condenser facilitates that a relatively small, a low-powered condenser, may be applied.
  • the condenser is configured to dissipate an effect between 50-1000 W, more preferably between 100-500 W, or 200- 400 W, and most preferably essentially 300 W.
  • the condenser is configured to dissipate an effect between 0.005 to 10 W/mL solvent reactant, more preferably between 0.5 to 2.0 W/mL solvent reactant, where the amount of solvent reactant is the amount present in the extraction chamber.
  • the amount of energy dissipated corresponds to the amount of energy provided by the heating element in the evaporation chamber.
  • the condenser may further be operated depending on the solvent reactant used within the device. To improve the energy efficiency and compactness of the device, it is further advantageous to apply a solvent reactant that is liquid at room temperature, such that additional temperature control units are not needed.
  • the condenser is configured to produce condensate having a temperature between 10- 50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
  • the condenser or heat sink is advantageously made of a metal with high thermal conductivity and that may be formed by extrusion.
  • metals include: aluminium, brass, copper, steel and titanium.
  • the condenser or heat sink is made of aluminium, optionally a surface treated aluminium.
  • the efficient condenser advantageously comprises a thermally conductive material.
  • suitable materials for a condenser include: aluminum, brass, copper, and any combination thereof.
  • the condenser is made of aluminum.
  • the condenser is in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber through a communication line 21 , which may be a tube as illustrated in Figures 1-2.
  • a communication line 21 which may be a tube as illustrated in Figures 1-2.
  • the tube has a certain inner diameter, such that the gaseous solvent may freely enter the condenser.
  • the communication line 21 has an inner diameter of between 20 to 10 mm, more preferably essentially 15 mm.
  • the opening, or hole, where the vapor to be condensed is flowing, may
  • FIGS 3, 4 and 7 show embodiments of an opening that is cone-shaped.
  • the opening is larger at the side where the vapor enters, such that the gaseous solvent may enter the condenser freely and without generating a pressure drop upon entering.
  • the opening at the side, where the condensed liquid is carried away from the condenser may have a smaller diameter.
  • the opening of the condenser has a cone-shape.
  • the diameter of the opening on the vapor side is 15 mm, and the diameter of the opening on the condensate side is 8 mm.
  • the device is advantageously not operated continuously.
  • it is advantageous with a reservoir for the solvent.
  • the condensate is advantageously stored in a storage chamber.
  • the storage chamber 10 is configured to contain the condensated solvent reactant, wherein the condensate has a temperature between 10- 50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
  • the communication line has a certain diameter, such that blockage or clogging is avoided.
  • the inner diameter of the tube is between 1-20 mm, more preferably between 5-10 mm, and most preferably is essentially 6 mm.
  • the outer diameter of the tube 22 is between 2-25 mm, more preferably between 5-10 mm, and most preferably is essentially 8 mm.
  • the storage chamber is compatible and does not react with the solvent reactant, i.e. is chemically inert.
  • the solvent reactants may be: water, methanol, ethanol, propanol, isopropanol, butanol, butane, propane, heptane, hexane, chloroform, dichloromethane, tetrachloromethane, acetone, formaldehyde, acetic acid, alcohols, and any combinations thereof.
  • An example of a material that is chemically inert especially towards the lighter alcohols include:
  • the storage chamber is made of a polymeric material, such as polyethylene (PE), or a glass material, such as Pyrex.
  • PE polyethylene
  • the device further comprises a pressure relief valve.
  • the pressure relief valve can be placed anywhere in the device to avoid pressure building up. However, advantageously, the pressure relief valve is placed in a part where volatiles may be present, such as the evaporation chamber, condenser, storage chamber, or in any of the fluid communication lines.
  • the device comprises a pressure relief valve, optionally placed within the evaporation chamber, and/or condenser, and/or the storage chamber, and/or a fluid communication line.
  • the liquid reservoir may be accessed.
  • additional liquid, or solvent reactant may be needed upon repeated extraction cycles.
  • the storage chamber comprises a recloseable opening, such as a nozzle.
  • the storage chamber may be in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, such that liquid from the storage chamber may be transferred to the extraction chamber.
  • the transfer may occur in a communication line, such as a pipe.
  • the transfer may further be controlled by a valve, such as a siphon valve.
  • the transfer is controlled by a first circulation unit, e.g. a peristaltic pump, as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the circulation unit, or pump may be controlled from a pump control interface, such as a microcontroller.
  • Figure 10 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 10(A) shows the device from a left view (left cross sectional view), Figure 10(B) from a top view, Figure 10(C) from a front view, Figure 10(D) from a bottom view, and Figure 10(E) from a right view (right cross sectional view.
  • Figure 1 1 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 1 1 (A) shows the device from the left view, where a part of the device is marked by A.
  • Figure 1 1 (B) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as A in Figure 10(A).
  • Figure 1 1 (C) shows an isometric view of the device.
  • Figure 1 1 (D) shows the device from the right view, where a part of the device is marked by B.
  • Figure 1 1 (E) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as B in Figure 10(D).
  • Figure 12 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention.
  • Figure 12(A) shows an isometric view of the device.
  • Figure 12(B) shows a back view of the device.
  • Figure 12(C) shows a front view of the device.
  • the devices 1 of Figures 10-12 are seen to comprise: Extraction Chamber 2, Inlet 3, Outlet 4, First temperature control system 5, Pump or First circulation unit 6,
  • Condensor Heat Sink 19 Tube from Extraction Chamber to Evaporation Chamber 20 (not directly visible in Figures 10-12) Tube from Evaporation Chamber to Condensor 21 , Tube from Condensor to Storage Chamber 22, Extraction chamber sample filter or inner sample filter 24, Wooden base with display 25, Power supply 26, Control Electronics 27, Heat sink for thermoelectric element 28, Fan for thermoelectric element heatsink 29, Thin isolating material surrounding peltier, blocks heattransfer from heatsink to extraction chamber 30, Bayonet socket with o-ring 31 , and Wooden base 32.
  • Figure 1 1 (F) further shows a break out view of the evaporation chamber 7.1 , and a break out view of the extraction chamber 2.1.
  • An embodiment of the invention describes a method for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising the following steps:
  • a device for producing an extract of a plant material such as the device according to the present disclosure, comprising an extraction chamber and an evaporation chamber,
  • Step I Providing a device
  • the method is configured to be carried in a device for producing an extract of a plant material, such as the device according to the present invention, comprising an extraction chamber and an evaporation chamber.
  • the method is configured to be carried out in the device according to the present invention, such as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
  • the plant material is placed within the extraction chamber.
  • the plant material is first placed in a filter before being placed within the extraction chamber.
  • the filter may be similar to a tea bag or a metallic filter, and facilitates control of the dispersion of the plant material within the chamber.
  • the plant material is in a dried state, and may be grinded to smaller pieces.
  • the dried plant material may be lavender, rosemary, chili or cannabis, which is lightly crumbled and placed into the filter.
  • the filter is configured to contain less than one ounce (corresponding to 28.35 g) of plant material.
  • the plant material (and filter) may be placed within the extraction chamber by removing the extraction chamber lid, inserting the material, and then closing the lid, which may be optionally sealed closed with a bayonet socket.
  • Step III Drying plant matter
  • the plant material placed within the extraction chamber is further dried at elevated temperatures above room temperature. This may be obtained by heating the inner chamber of the extraction chamber to a temperature and duration, suitable for drying the inserted plant material.
  • the plant material is subjected to a temperature between 25 to 100°C.
  • the device may comprise a user interface configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber. In further embodiment, the user may control the drying
  • the temperature control system for the extraction chamber may comprise a heat source in the form of a peltier element with its polarity reversed.
  • Step IV Controlling the temperature
  • the extraction chamber is constructed of a heat conductive material that is cooled or heated to a specific temperature. For most alcohol extractions, a temperature range between -40°C and 70°C is suitable. Once the desired temperature is obtained, it is kept stable.
  • the temperature of the extraction process may be controlled by either controlling the temperature of the extraction chamber and/or controlling the temperature of the solvent that is supplied ot the extraction chamber.
  • Figure 1 shows an embodiment, where the temperature of the solvent is heated/cooled immediately before the solvent enters the inlet to the extraction chamber.
  • Figure 2 shows an embodiment, where the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled by a thermoelectric element. In an embodiment of the invention, the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled to be between -40°C and 70°C.
  • the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled to be between -40°C and 70°C.
  • the device may comprise a user interface configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the user may control the temperature and duration using a built-in display and user interface, and/or a wireless connection to a mobile device such as a computer or a phone.
  • Figures 1 -2 shows embodiments, where the solvent reactant is injected into the extraction chamber using a first circulation unit or a pump.
  • the solvent is injected slowly, and at a rate where the temperature of the solvent is close to the temperature of the extraction chamber.
  • the solvent is adjusted to a predefined temperature in line, before it is injected into the extraction chamber.
  • the solvent present in the extraction chamber is stirred, which may increase the extraction yield.
  • the stirring may be obtained using a circulation unit, by pumping a volume of liquid into the chamber, reverse the pump direction and pump a small amount of liquid back into the tube.
  • the direction of the pump is again set to forward and the solvent is re-injected at a high rate, causing agitating in the liquid and assisting the extraction.
  • the plant matter is soaked in combination with stirring of the solvent present.
  • the flow of the secondary circulation unit (16) is reversed and used to transfer air from the evaporation chamber to the bottom of the extraction chamber. This causes the extraction liquid to agitate and increases extraction efficiency.
  • the stirring may be obtained by a first circulation unit placed at the at least one inlet of the extraction chamber, and/or by a second circulation unit placed at the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber.
  • Step VI Soaking plant matter
  • the plant matter is soaked in the injected solvent reactant for a predefined period of time. While soaking, the one or more circulation unit(s) may agitate the liquid by pumping solvent in and out of the extraction chamber. The agitation is done to assist the extraction of the plant matter.
  • the liquid phase comprising the solvent and extracted components is drained out of the extraction chamber.
  • This may be obtained by a second circulation unit, such as a pump, as shown in Figure 2.
  • the liquid phase is drained into the evaporation chamber, while the solid plant matter used for the extraction is retained in the extraction chamber via the sample filter placed inside the extraction chamber. Any solid plant matter which are present outside the filter and suspended within the liquid phase, may be filtered out using a removable inline filter as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the evaporation chamber is heated to separate the components of the mixture. This may be done by a band heater engaged to heat the evaporation chamber as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the temperature of the evaporation chamber may be monitored using a microcontroller, and the bandheater may be controlled to maintain the temperature of the chamber at a point close to the solvent boiling point.
  • Another option for evaporating the liquid is to apply a vacuum to lower the boiling point. The vapor from the distillation may escape through an upper opening of the
  • the vapor tube then optionally carries the solvent vapor into a condenser.
  • the extracted plant components are left in evaporation chamber.
  • the extracts are collected in a removable cap once the majority of the solvent is distilled from the extraction broth, as illustrated in Figure 2.
  • the power to the band heater may be reduced during the last part of the distillation to avoid heating the evaporation chamber above the solvent boiling point and damage the plant extract product.
  • the solvent vapor from the vapor tube may enter a condenser.
  • the vapor may be cooled to room temperature by means of a heat sink with a fan built in to remove heat.
  • the temperature of the heat sink is monitored from a microcontroller, and the fan speed is adjusted to keep the temperature of the heat sink low.
  • the solvent vapor condenses into a liquid at this stage and may be returned to the extraction chamber, and/or to a liquid reservoir, or storage chamber.
  • the color of the extracts recovered using a higher extraction temperature is darker.
  • the chemical composition of the extracts may further be analyzed using TLC (thin layer chromatography). It may be concluded that the cannabis extraction has a higher efficiency, at the lower extraction temperature. It may further be concluded that the cannabis extraction has a higher selectivity at the lower extraction temperature, e.g. the content of chlorofyl within the extract is reduced.
  • Example 2 Effect of stirring
  • Example 3 Peltier cooling parameters .
  • the cooling effect of a peltier element depends on the current applied. However, it was found that the cooling effect is not linearly dependent on the amount of current. Table 3 shows the cooling effect (i.e. the temperature on the side of the peltier element in contact with the extraction chamber, Tbottom) as a function of the applied current in watts.
  • the device as shown in Figure 2 was tested using different thicknesses of PUR isolation on the vertical walls of the extraction chamber. For a thickness of 2 cm insulation it was found that the system has a heat loss of 6 watts if there is a 35 degree Celsius temperature difference between the liquid and the ambient temperature. This heatloss is within the limits of what the Peltier element can remove.

Abstract

The present disclosure relates to a device for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising: an extraction chamber (2) adapted to contain the plant material and a solvent reactant, said chamber comprising at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port, at least one first circulation unit (6) configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber, an evaporation chamber (7) in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, configured to receive a mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant from the extraction chamber, and further configured to evaporate at least a part of the solvent reactant from the received mixture.

Description

Domestic household device for plant extraction Field of invention
The present invention relates to a device for solvent-based extraction of plant materials.
Background of invention
Active compounds for commercial products such as pharmaceuticals, perfumes, and food and beverage consumables e.g. food flavours, may be extracted from plant materials. A simple and efficient extraction method is solvent extraction, where the plant material is brought into contact with a solvent, whereby compounds from the plant is extracted, and go into solution with the solvent. The extracted compounds may then subsequently be recovered or isolated from the solution mixture by selectively removing the solvent part of the mixture, e.g. by evaporation or volatilization of the solvent.
The efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process will depend on the extraction parameters. The extraction parameters include: pretreatment of plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. Thus, the extraction parameters may be optimized to extract certain active compounds from a plant with a high selectivity (i.e. the extracted compounds consist mainly of the desired active compounds) and/or with a high efficiency (i.e. a high degree of the desired compounds present in the original plant are extracted). Solvent extractions are traditionally performed at large industrial scale. It is difficult to do so in a domestic setting without laboratory equipment and can furthermore release flammable and potentially toxic gasses. It is also expensive in the sense that the solvent is rarely recycled. To produce commercial relevant amounts of the extracts, large volume quantities of plant material, and large quantities of flammable, and potentially explosive, solvents and corresponding volatiles, are typically involved.
Furthermore, regulation of the extraction parameters, such as the temperature and the flow of solvent and volatilized solvent, conventionally require space-consuming control and safety systems. US 9,327,210 B1 [1 ] discloses a solvent-based extraction device, where the extraction is carried out in an extraction chamber using exemplified butane as solvent. The extracted solution mixture flows into a collection reservoir, and the collection reservoir is then heated to volatilize butane and separate it from the extract. The volatilized butane is drawn into a solvent reservoir that is cooled, optionally through a condensing coil that is also cooled, such that the butane gas condenses to liquid. The temperatures of the different parts are controlled by temperature regulated baths, and the thermal gradients between the parts regulate the flow of solvents and corresponding volatiles, within the manifold system. The temperature gradients and use of butane, necessitate the use of sub-room temperature cooling, such as cooling by dry ice pellets, which demands space-consuming control and safety systems.
Thus, current extraction devices and extraction methods are larger, complex devices that are not flexible. To improve the flexibility, there is a need for devices that are more compact, efficient, selective, simpler and safe to use.
Summary of invention
The present disclosure relates to a device for solvent-based extraction of plant materials, which is highly compact, efficient, selective, flexible, and simple and safe to use. The device may be configured as a domestic kitchen device for a household, with dimensions making it suitable for home-based or household extraction. The present disclosure further facilitates the possibility of high efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process, such that the volume efficiency of the process is high. The present disclosure further provides a device that is more simple and safe to use, thus making it suitable for a layman user to operate. For example, the device may be operated fully automatically via a user interface.
A first aspect of the invention relates to a device for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising:
- an extraction chamber 2 adapted to contain the plant material and a solvent reactant, said chamber comprising at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port, at least one first circulation unit 6 configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber,
an evaporation chamber 7 in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, configured to receive a mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant from the extraction chamber, and further configured to evaporate at least a part of the solvent reactant from the received mixture.
In a preferred embodiment of the first aspect, the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device. In a further preferred embodiment, the device is configured as a kitchen device according to one or more standards selected from the group of: EN 60335-1 , IEC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082.
In another and/or further embodiment of the first aspect, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum height of the assembly of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum height of 500, 490, 470, or 460 mm, such as a maximum height of essentially 455 mm.
In another and/or further embodiment of the first aspect, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum width of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum width of 500, 450, 400, 350, 300 mm, and most preferably a maximum width of 200 mm, such as a maximum width of essentially 180 mm.
A second aspect of the invention relates to a method for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising the steps of:
- providing the device according to the first aspect as disclosed above,
- inserting plant material into the extraction chamber, wherein the plant material optionally is placed within a sample filter,
- optionally drying the plant material at a temperature above 20°C,
- cooling the extraction chamber to a temperature below 0°C,
- injecting a solvent reactant into the extraction chamber,
- soaking the plant material in the solvent reactant, thereby producing a fluid extract,
- draining the fluid mixture of solvent reactant and extract into the evaporation chamber,
- evaporating the solvent reactant from the fluid mixture, thereby separating and recovering the extract,
- optionally condensing the evaporated solvent reactant,
whereby an extract of the plant material is produced. A third aspect of the invention relates to the device according to the first aspect for producing an extract of a plant material.
Description of Drawings
The invention will in the following be described in greater detail with reference to the accompanying drawings.
Figure 1 : shows an embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material. Figure 2: shows a schematic embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material.
Figure 3: shows an embodiment of the condenser in a perspective view from the top.
Figure 4: shows an embodiment of the condenser in perspective view from the bottom Figure 5: shows an embodiment of the condenser from the top.
Figure 6: shows an embodiment of the condenser from the side, where the condensed liquid exits.
Figure 7: shows an embodiment of the condenser from the side, where the vapour enters.
Figure 8: shows an embodiment of the condenser from the bottom.
Figure 9: shows the recovered extracts from Example 1 .
Figure 10: shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 10(A) shows the device from a left view (left cross sectional view), Figure 10(B) from a top view, Figure 10(C) from a front view, Figure 10(D) from a bottom view, and Figure 10(E) from a right view (right cross sectional view.
Figure 1 1 : shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 1 1 (A) shows the device from the left view, where a part of the device is marked by A. Figure 1 1 (B) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as A in Figure 10(A).
The detailed area A may for example be embodied in a scale 1 :2. Figure 1 1 (C) shows an isometric view of the device. Figure 1 1 (D) shows the device from the right view, where a part of the device is marked by B. The detailed area B may for example be embodied in a scale 2:5. Figure 1 1 (E) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as B in Figure 10(D). Figure 1 1 (F) shows the device from the left view, including a break out view of the evaporation chamber 7.1 , and a break out view of the extraction chamber 2.1.
Figure 12: shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 12(A) shows an isometric view of the device. Figure 12(B) shows a back view of the device. Figure 12(C) shows a front view of the device.
Detailed description of the invention
The invention is described below with the help of the accompanying figures. It would be appreciated by the people skilled in the art that same feature of component of the device are referred with the same reference numeral in different figures. A list of the reference numbers can be found at the end of the detailed description section.
Figure 1 shows an embodiment of a device for producing an extract of a plant material. The device 1 is a solvent-based extraction device, where the plant material to be extracted is placed within an extraction chamber 2 and exposed to a solvent suitable for extracting, or dissolving, one or more active compounds from the plant material. Thus, the reactive solvent may also be referred to as a solvent reactant.
Optionally, the extraction chamber comprises a detachably attached lid 11 for providing original, or unused, plant material to the extraction chamber, and/or for removing used and extracted plant material from the extraction chamber. Examples of detachably attached lids include lids mounted using mechanisms such as magnetic, clip-on, screw, and bayonet socket. In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber comprises a detachably attached lid 11 adapted for providing and/or removing plant material to/from the extraction chamber.
Advantageously, the extracting chamber comprises an inner sample filter 24 (shown in Figure 2) that is configured to retain any plant matter and fibers, such that the plant material is not fully dispersed within the extraction chamber. Thus, the sample filter functions in a similar manner as a tea filter bag or a metal tea filter. The mesh size of the sample filter is configured to allow free flow of solvent reactant, while restraining any plant matter. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm, more preferably between 0.1 to 30 mm, 0.2 to 2 mm, or 0.5 to 3 mm, and most preferably is essentially 1 mm.
In another embodiment the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 5 mm(10 to 5.000 microns), more preferably between 0.02 to 3 mm(20 to 3.000 microns), 0.03 to 2 mm(30 to 2.000 microns), or 0.04 to 0.1 mm (40 to 100 microns), and most preferably is essentially 0.1 mm (100 microns).
The extraction chamber further comprises at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate or flow into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port.
Figures 1 -2 show an embodiment, where the extraction chamber comprises at least two ports, wherein the first port 3 is configured as a flow inlet, and the second port 4 is configured as a flow outlet. The extraction chamber of Figures 1-2 is seen to comprise a first port, or the inlet 3 (not directly visible in Figure 1 ), and a second port, or the outlet 4 suitable for transferring, circulating or flowing a fluid or liquid phase
respectively to and from the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the extraction chamber comprises multiple inlets and/or multiple outlets.
In an alternative embodiment, the extraction chamber comprises only one port, where said port is configured to be bidirectional, meaning that it is configured to act as both a flow inlet and a flow outlet. A bidirectional port may be obtained by connecting a split tube to said port. By the term split tube is meant a tube comprising a larger lumen at a first end of the tube, wherein the larger lumen is diverted or split into two or more smaller lumens along the longitudinal length of the tube, such that the second end of the tube comprises multiple smaller lumens. The larger lumen may be split by introducing splitters or spacers within the lumen. The flow of each lumen of the split tube may be controlled separately and/or dependency. For example, the flow of a first lumen of the split tube may be controlled by a first flow controller, and the flow of of a second lumen of the split tube may be controlled by a second flow controller. Thus, the larger lumen at the first end of the tube may be connected to the port of the extraction chamber, and the port may act as a flow inlet when a first lumen of the split tube is applied, and the port may act as a flow outlet when a second lumen of the split tube is applied.
In an embodiment of the invention, the at least one port is configured to be bidirectional thereby providing both a flow inlet and flow outlet of the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the at least one port is in fluid communication with a split tube 3B, wherein at least a first lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow inlet 3, and at least a second lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow outlet 4.
The extraction efficiency and extraction selectivity with regards to the desired active compounds, will depend on the extraction parameters including: pretreatment of the plant material, the type of solvent, temperature profile and degree of control, and the duration of the exposure to the solvent. It is therefore advantageous that the
temperature and solvent content of the extraction chamber can be controlled accurately. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a first temperature control system 5, configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber. Thus, the embodiment of the invention shown in Figure 1 comprises a first temperature control system 5, configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber. The system may have any operational temperature range, and may further be digitally and automatically controlled, and/or controlled via a user interface. The system may for example be used for thermally pre-treating the plant material before the extraction process, e.g. drying the original plant material at temperatures above 50°C. The system may further be used for controlling the temperature of the extraction process, thereby using a temperature where the efficiency and selectivity are advantageous. This temperature may e.g. be below 0°C. In the embodiment of Figure 1 , the first temperature control system is embodied to comprise a thermoelectric element 15 in thermal communication with the extraction chamber. The thermal contact may be in the form of a direct solid contact with the extraction chamber, e.g. the bottom of the extraction chamber, or indirectly in the form of a thermal contact to the inlet, or inlet part, of the extraction chamber. Both embodiments are indicated in Figure 1 . The embodiment shown in Figure 1 further comprises a first circulation unit 6, e.g. a pumping unit, configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber. The solvent reactant may be provided manually to the first circulation unit, or may be provided from a liquid reservoir, or storage chamber 10. Optionally, the first circulation unit 6 is fully digitally and automatically controlled, and/or controlled via a user interface.
Advantageously, the first circulation unit comprises a flow controller. Any type of flow controller may be used, including manual fluid supply, supply, gravity driven supply or pumps in combination with a valve, such as as a solenoid valver or digitally operated solenoid valve, and pumps. In an embodiment of the invention, the first circulation unit comprises one or more flow controllers selected from the group of: displacement pumps, peristaltic pumps, gas pressure driven pumps, gravity driven pumps in combination with a valve, such as a solenoid valver or digitally operated solenoid valve.
The circulation unit may further be reversibly operable, whereby it may either transfer solvent reactant to the extraction chamber, or transfer liquid or fluid away from the extraction chamber. Thus, the amount of solvent reactant present within the extraction chamber may be controlled, and indirectly the duration of the solvent exposure may be controlled by the relationship between the flow inlet and flow outlet.
A reversibly operable circulation unit is further advantageous, when the at least one port is operated as both a flow inlet and flow outlet, or when the circulation unit is configured as a stirrer as described in following parts.
The extraction process occurring within the extraction chamber results in two products: solid, used and extracted plant material, and a liquid solution, or liquid mixture, comprising the solvent reactant and the extracted compounds.
The extracted compounds may be partially or fully isolated or recovered within an evaporation chamber 7, where the the evaporation chamber is in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, and configured to receive the solution, or mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant, from the reaction chamber. Figure 1 shows an
embodiment of the evaporation chamber, where the fluid communication 20 is in the form of an inverted U-tube or a siphon valve. In addition, or alternatively, a second circulation unit 16 may be included, such as a pumping unit e.g. a displacement pump, for controlling the flow from the extraction chamber to the evaporation chamber. The second circulation unit may comprise any type of flow controller, including manually operated, gravity driven or pumps in combination with a valve, such as as a solenoid valve or digitally operated solenoid valve, and pumps, such as gas driven pumps, displacement pumps, and peristaltic pumps. Thus, the solution received within the evaporation chamber may be controlled.
The extracted compounds are recovered within the evaporation chamber by separating the solution, or mixture, into different phases. This may be obtained by heating the liquid mixture of extracted compounds and solvent reactant to a temperature at which the solvent reactant enters the gaseous phase. Another option is to use vacuum to evaporate the solvent. Thus, the solvent in a gaseous phase is separated from the liquid extract. It is therefore essential that the boiling point of the solvent reactant is lower than the boiling point of the extracted compounds that is to be recovered. An example of a suitable solvent reactant is an alcohol. Most commercially available alcohols may have a boiling point that is lower than the boiling point of essential oil compounds extracted from plant material.
The phase separation, and the degree of phase separation, may be controlled by a second temperature control system 8, configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture within the evaporation chamber. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a second temperature control system 8 and/or a vacuum control system configured for evaporating at least a part of the solvent from the received mixture. In the embodiment of Figure 1 , the second temperature control system is embodied to comprise a heating element 8, such as a 230VAC heating band, in thermal communication with the extraction chamber, e.g. placed in direct contact with the chamber walls. Other examples of systems configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture within the evaporation chamber include: vacuum control systems, heated oil bath, induction, and any combinations thereof.
The separated liquid, which may comprise the extracted compounds and part of the solvent reactant, may be recovered at the bottom of the extraction chamber. In the embodiment of Figure 1 , the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached container 12, adapted for containing the separated liquid. The container may be in the shape of a removable cap. Thus, the extract from the plant material, and optionally a part of the solvent reactant, may be recovered by the user. Examples of detachably attached containers include containers mounted using mechanisms such as magnetic, clip-on, screw, and bayonet socket. In an embodiment of the invention, the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached container 12 adapted for containing and recovering the extract from the plant material, and optionally a part of the solvent reactant. In a further embodiment, the container has the shape of a removable cap, such as a screw cap, bayonet socket or clip. The separated liquid recovered within the container, advantageously comprises both extracted compounds and a part of the solvent reactant. The viscosity of the extracted compounds will typically be much higher than the viscosity of the solvent reactant. Thus, the viscosity of the recovered liquid product, may be controlled by varying the amount of solvent reactant comprised within the recovered product.
The embodiment of the device shown in Figure 1 may be fully digitally and
automatically controlled, and/or controlled via a user interface. Figure 2 shows an embodiment of the invention, where the processes occurring in all parts and chambers are controlled based on electrical inputs from e.g. temperature sensors.
Advantageously, the extraction process is carried out in a closed-cycle device, where the interface with the user is limited to the user interface, and to providing plant material to the extraction chamber, and removing the extract from the evaporation chamber.
A closed-cycle device may be obtained by recycling the solvent reactant within the device. Figures 1-2 show embodiments of the device, where recycling of the solvent reactant is obtained by including a condenser 9. The condenser is in fluid
communication 21 with the evaporation chamber, and configured for receiving and condensing the evaporated solvent reactant. Thus, the gaseous solvent reactant formed within the evaporation chamber is transferred to the condenser, where it is condensed to the liquid state. The driving force for the transfer may be the vapour pressure and/or differences in the chemical potential. The formed condensate is identical to the original solvent reactant, and may be transferred to the extraction chamber or the liquid reservoir via the first circulation unit. Thus, the solvent reactant may be recycled and reused, and the device forms a closed- circle device. The same plant material placed in the extraction chamber may therefore be subjected to multiple successive extraction cycles, i.e. multiple recycles of the solvent reactant. Furthermore, the original supply of solvent reactant may be reused for different batches of plant materials.
By the term an "extraction cycle" is meant the event or process, where the plant material in the extraction chamber is exposed to solvent reactant for a defined period of time. After the exposure, the solvent reactant is drained from the extraction chamber, and transferred to the evaporation chamber, and subsequently transferred to the condenser, optionally the liquid storage chamber. For the second extraction cycle, the plant material in the extraction chamber is exposed to a solvent reactant entering the extraction chamber through the port inlet. The solvent reactant for the second extraction cycle may comprise entirely or partly of the first original supply of solvent reactant.
Thus, the operation of the device may include a first supply of solvent reactant, and the user of the device thus have minimum contact with the solvent reactant, when only a first supply of solvent is needed, and said first supply is recycled for subsequent extraction cycled. The recycling may be repeated for any number of cycles.
Alternatively, or in addition, the device may be supplied with a second, third, and so forth supply of new solvent, for a following extration process within the extraction chamber.
In an embodiment of the invention, more than 50 vol% of the first original supply of solvent is recycled, more preferably more than 75 vol% or more than 90 vol% of the solvent, and most preferably essentially all of the original supply of solvent is recycled. The condenser and/or extraction chamber will in most cases not operate continuously. Thus, to minimize the operation costs of the device, it is advantageous that the condensate from the condenser can be stored in a storage chamber. The condenser is then in fluid communication 21 with the evaporation chamber as illustrated in Figure 1. Figure 2 further shows an embodiment of the invention, where the condensate may be stored in a storage chamber, or liquid reservoir, placed in the line between the condenser and the first circulation unit.
In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a condenser 9 in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber, and configured for receiving and condensing the evaporated solvent reactant. In a further embodiment, the device is configured for recycling the condensate from the condenser to the extraction chamber, thereby providing recycled solvent reactant to the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the device comprises a storage chamber 10 in fluid communication with the condenser and the first circulation unit, and adapted for storing the condensate from the condensor.
Dimensions
Domestic devices for households, such as kitchen equipment, are advantageously dimensioned to sizes and volumes accessible in standard homes, households and kitchens. Furthermore, a compact and efficient device has the advantage of requiring smaller amounts of plant material and being easier to maintain and service. A compact and efficient device may be obtained by assembling and sizing the parts of the device in a suitable and energy efficient manner.
In an embodiment of the invention, the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
Advantageously the device is configured as a kitchen device according to a standard, such as a standard related to the size and safety requirements of the kitchen device. Several standards for kitchen devices or equipment exist, including: EN 60335-1 , I EC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the device is configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device. In a further preferred embodiment, the device is configured as a kitchen device according to one or more standards selected from the group of: EN 60335-1 , IEC 60335-1 , IEC 60335-5, UL 197, and UL 1082.
Advantageously, the device may be placed on a kitchen working table and/or below a hanging kitchen cupboard. Thus, the maximum volume, base area or footprint, height, width, and/or depth or length of the device is advantageously adapted to fit in a standard household kitchen. By the term "base area" or "footprint" is meant the area defined by the width and depth of the device . By the term "width" is meant the dimension along the longitudinal direction of a planar kitchen working table, and by the term "depth" is meant the dimension along the lateral direction of a planar kitchen working table. The terms "depth" and "length" may be used synonymous.
In a further embodiment, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum height of the assembly of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum height of 500, 490, 470, or 460 mm, such as a maximum height of essentially 455 mm.
In a further embodiment, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum volume of 1000 L, more preferably a maximum volume of 500, 300, 200, 100, 50, or 40 L, and most preferably a maximum volume of 30 or 20 L, such as a maximum volume of essentially 19.5 L.
In a further embodiment, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum base area or footprint of 1 m2, more preferably a maximum base area of 0.6, 0.4, or 0.2 m2, and most preferably a maximum base area of 0.1 , or 0.05 m2, such as a maximum footprint of essentially 0.0424 m2.
In a further embodiment, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum width of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum width of 500, 450, 400, 350, 300 mm, and most preferably a maximum width of 200 mm, such as a maximum width of essentially 180 mm.
In a further embodiment, the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum depth or length of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum depth of 500, 490, 450, 400 mm, and most preferably a maximum depth of 300 mm, such as a maximum length of essentially 320 mm.
Health and safety
Domestic devices for households, such as kitchen equipment, are advantageously operated on non-toxic or low toxic materials. Thus, for home extraction of plants the device should operate on low- or non-toxic solvents and corresponding volatiles. In addition, it is advantageous from a safety and risk perspective that the amounts of solvents and corresponding volatiles are kept to minimum volumes. In this case, the health risks associated with accidental leaks or other accidents are minimized. Thus, miniaturized or compact solvent-based extraction devices are safer, more user-friendly, and may be operated by a layman.
Solvent extraction of plant material may be performed with a wide range of solvents, such as: alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, substituted alkanes, alcohols, ketones, organic acids, esters, dimethylsulfoxide, and dimethylformamide. Examples of solvents include: water, methanol, ethanol, propanol, isopropanol, butanol, butane, propane, heptane, hexane, chloroform, dichloromethane, tetrachloromethane, acetone, formaldehyde, acetic acid, alcohols. Commonly known solvents with high efficiency are toxic and explosive solvents or greenhouse gasses, such as butane, propane, C02 and gasoline. Thus, alcohols are advantageously used for solvent extraction due to their low or non-toxic properties, thereby minimizing the environmental concerns and the safety requirements associated with the process. Examples of suitable alcohols, where high efficiencies may be obtained in a compact device, include ethanol and
isopropanols, such as 1 -propanol and 2-propanol. The properties of the extraction chamber are therefore advantageously compatible with alcohols in solid, liquid and/or gaseous state. For example, the walls of the extraction chamber are made of a material that is non-reactive with the alcohol, and the walls have a density such that they may contain the alcohol. In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to contain a solvent reactant that is an alcohol, preferably selected from the group of: ethanol, isopropanol, 1 -propanol and 2-propanol.
To minimize the health risks of the user, it is further advantageous that the user has a minimum contact with the solvents and associated volatiles. Thus, a closed-cycle device where the solvent reactant is recycled is advantageous. A fully automated system may further be advantageous.
In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a user interface configured to control the temperature profile of the extraction chamber, and optionally control the temperature profile of the evaporation chamber, and the operation of the condenser, and circulation unit(s).
The extraction process involves that some parts of the device may have a temperature above room temperature (e.g. the evaporating chamber, and heating elements), some parts of the device may have a temperature below room temperature (e.g. the extraction chamber), and some parts of the device will have room temperature (e.g. condenser and storage chamber). Furthermore, the user has to interact with some parts of the device (e.g. the extraction chamber lid 11 and the container for the extract 12).
To minimize the health risks of the user, it is advantageous that the parts of the device, which the user has to interact with, are made of a thermally insulating material or materials with a low thermal conducitivity. It is further advantageous that the user may easily and visibly identify the parts, which are safe to interact with. For example, the parts which the user may interact with may be made of, or covered by, wood, in contrast to the other parts which may be made of, or covered by, a metal, such as aluminium. In an embodiment of the invention, the lid 11 and/or the container 12 comprises a thermally insulating material, such as a material with a thermal conductivity below 5, 3, or 1 W/(m K) at 25 °C, and optionally is made of wood.
Extraction chamber
To obtain a compact and efficient device, the extraction chamber is advantageously dimensioned to a minimum size. Furthermore, for home-based extraction, the extraction chamber should be dimensioned such that the consumables, i.e. a batch of plant material, are manageable and easy to handle. However, the extraction chamber should also be dimensioned such that a suitable amount of extract can be produced from a single batch of plant material, where the batch of plant material may be subjected to one or more extraction cycles.
The suitable batch size of a plant material, and thus the necessary size of the extraction chamber, will depend on the type of plant and the extraction efficiency. Examples of plant materials include: peppermint, cannabis, valerian root, kava kava, opium poppies, psilocybin mushrooms, and examples of the active compounds that are extracted from the plants include: THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD (cannabidiol), menthol, kavalactones, opium, and psilocybin. A suitable batch size for most plant materials is below 50 g of plant material, and in many cases below 10 g. If the extraction efficiency is 15-20%, a batch size of 10 g cannabis will result in 1 .5-2 g of THC and CBD extract, which in many cases correspond a the weekly consumption of a household. Another suitable batch size for most plant materials is below 300 g of plant material, and in many cases below 50 g. If the concentration of desired compounds, such as THC or CBD is in the range of 20%, and the extraction efficiency is 80%, a batch size of 20 g cannabis will result in 3,2 g of THC and CBD contents in an extract, which in many cases correspond a the weekly consumption of a household.
In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 50 g of plant material, more preferably below 40, 30, or 20 g of plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 10 g of plant material. In another embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 300 g of dried plant material, more preferably below 100, 50, or 30 g of dried plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 20 g of plant material.
As described earlier, advantageously, the extracting chamber comprises an inner sample filter 24 (shown in Figure 2) that is configured to retain any plant matter and fibers, such that the plant material is not fully dispersed within the extraction chamber. Thus, the sample filter functions in a similar manner as a tea filter bag or a metal tea filter. The mesh size of the sample filter is configured to allow free flow of solvent reactant, while restraining any plant matter. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm, more preferably between 0.1 to 30 mm, 0.2 to 2 mm, or 0.5 to 3 mm, and most preferably is essentially 1 mm.
In another embodiment of the invention the mesh filter is of between 0.01 to 50 mm(10 to 50.000 microns), more preferably between 0.02 to 30 mm(20 to 30.000 microns), 0.03 to 2 mm(30 to 2.000 microns), or 0.04 to 0.1 mm (40 to 100 microns), and most preferably is essentially 0.1 mm (100 microns).
The suitable size of the extraction chamber will also depend on the amount of solvent, and the associated ratio between the plant material and the solvent reactant.
In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 700 mL of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 500 mL, and most preferably between 150 to 300 mL, such as 200 mL. In a further embodiment, the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : mL solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:200.
In an another embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 2000 mL of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 700 mL, and most preferably between 150 to 300 mL, such as 200 mL. In a further embodiment, the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : mL solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:100.
The efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process may be improved, the better the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled. Furthermore, the energy efficiency of the device is improved if the extraction chamber is compact, and has heat conducting parts that are insulated. To further optimize the energy efficiency and compactness of the device, it is advantageous that the wall thickness of the extraction chamber and insulation are optimized.
It is further advantageous that the extraction chamber walls and the associated insulating layer are made of materials that are compatible and do not react with the solvent reactant in case of contact. It was found that polymeric foams, such as polyurethane (PUR) foam, show excellent resistance upon contact with alcohols, such as ethanol.
Example 5 further describes the resistance of the insulating material towards the solvent reactant. Figure 2 shows an embodiment of the extraction chamber, comprising an inner wall 13 of a high thermally conducting material, such as a metal, and an outer wall or layer of insulating material. The thermal properties of the material will ensure a minimal temperature gradient within the extraction chamber, or inner chamber, and the solvent present within the chamber. The embodiment further illustrates that the vertical walls of the extraction chamber are covered by an insulating layer.
Examples of inner wall materials with high thermal conductivity include: aluminium (Al), surface treated aluminium, copper (Cu), and brass. Examples of outer wall materials with insulation properties include: Styrofoam, glasswool, Rockwool, polyurethane foam, and aerogel. For example, PUR is a thermally insulating material, or low thermal conductive material, with a thermal conductivity of essentially 0,023 W/mK at 25 °C. In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber comprises walls 13 of a thermally conductive material, such as a material with a thermal conductivity above 50 W/(m K) at 25 °C, or more preferably above 100 W/(m K) at 25 °C, such as aluminium (Al), surface treated aluminium, brass, and copper. In a further embodiment, the walls of the extraction chamber have a thickness between 1 mm to 10 mm, more preferably between 2-8 mm, or 3-7 mm, and most preferably is essentially 5 mm.
In a further embodiment of the invention, at least a part of the extraction chamber walls are covered with a thermally insulating material 14, such as a material with a thermal conductivity below 30 W/(m K) at 25°C or more preferably below 10 or 5 W/(m K), such as polyurethane (PUR), a foam of PUR, aerogel, glasswool, rockwool, styrofoam, and any combination thereof. In a further embodiment, the vertical walls of the extraction chamber are covered with the insulating material. In a further embodiment, the thickness of the insulating material is between 0.5-5 cm, more preferably between 1 -4 cm, or 1-3 cm, and most preferably is essentially 2 cm.
To control and maintain a defined temperature of the extraction chamber, the extraction chamber is advantageously closed in a leak-tight manner, and most of the chamber walls are insulated. Thus, it is advantageous that as much as possible of the top wall of the extraction chamber is insulated, and as much as possible of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is insulated.
Figures 1 -2 show embodiments of the invention, where the extraction chamber comprises a lid 11 in the top. The lid may be fixed in a leak-tight manner by use of a bayonet socket, screw or clip mechanism. In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber is configured to be closed in a leak-tight manner. In a further embodiment, the extraction chamber comprises a lid comprising a thermally insulating material.
In the embodiment shown in Figure 2, a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is in thermal communication with a thermoelectric element comprised within the first temperature control system. Such a thermal communication between the extraction chamber and the first temperature control system is essential for changing and controlling the temperature within the extraction chamber.
By the term "thermal communication" is meant a contact interface with an very small thermal resistance, such as an interface having a thermal conductivity above 10 or 16 W/(m K). For example, thermal communication is obtained when the thermal resistance corresponds to the thermal resistance of a 1 cm steel plate having a thermal resistance of 2 K/W.
In a further embodiment, at least one of the inner walls of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with the first temperature control system, such as a peltier element. In a further embodiment, a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with the temperature control system, such as a peltier element.
To further control and maintain thetemperature of the extraction chamber, it is advantageous that the part of the extraction wall that is not in thermal communication with a part of the first temperature control system, is insulated in a similar manner as the other walls. Thus, a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber may be covered with a thermally insulating material, or a thermal break, for example in the shape of a ring-shaped disk.
In an embodiment of the invention, the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is partly covered with an insulating material 30, as illustrated in Figure 10. Extraction chamber - Temperature control
The efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process is affected by the extraction temperature, and thus the temperature of the extraction chamber. The optimal temperature will further vary depending on the plant material and the active compounds desired for extraction. Most solvents are more selective, at a low temperature. For extracting THC and CBD from cannabis, the extraction temperature is advantageously below 0°C, and preferably around -10°C, to produce the highest efficiency and selectivity. It may further be advantageous that the temperature of the extraction is varied during the extraction process. The associated temperature gradients may result in a higher efficiency, corresponding to higher extraction yields.
In an embodiment of the invention, the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -20°C to 0°C, more preferably between -15°C to -5°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C. In a further embodiment, the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
In another embodiment of the invention, the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -40°C to 0°C, more preferably between -15°C to -5°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C. In a further embodiment, the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
The efficiency and selectivity of the process may further be determined by any pre- treatment of the plant material. Advantageously, the system may be further used for thermally pre-treating the plant material before the extraction process, e.g. drying the original plant material at temperatures above 50°C. Advantageously, the first temperature control system may be used for both controlling the temperature of the extraction process and pre-treatment process, thereby using a temperature where the efficiency and selectivity are advantageous. Thus, in this case, the temperature control system must be configured to enable a temperature profile over time, including at least two pre-defined set-temperatures, such as a first set temperature that is above 0 °C, and a second set temperature that is below 0 °C. In an embodiment of the invention, the first temperature control system 5 is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -20°C to 99°C, more preferably between -20°C to 60°C, -15°C to 50°C, -5°C to 40°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C, or 60°C. In a further embodiment, the first temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the temperature profile comprises at least two periods with different temperature sets, such as a first period with a temperature set between 20°C to 99°C, and a second period with a temperature set between -20°C to 0°C.
To obtain a compact and energy efficient device, the first temperature control system is advantageously dimensioned to a minimum size. A minimum size may be obtained by configuring the same system to be operable in wide temperature range, including the capability of acting as both heating element and cooling element.
For compact extraction chambers, where the amounts of plant material and solvent reactant are smaller, efficient and compact temperature control may be obtained by a thermoelectric element, such as a peltier element. In contrast, larger extraction chambers inherently requires more powerful and space-requiring temperature controls, such as compressor cooling, which are operated at high-watts and takes up more volume.
A large operable temperature range, including heating and cooling, may be obtained with a peltier element, since the peltier element act as a thermal pump, where the thermal flux may be controlled by the direction of the provided electric current. Thus, by reversing the direction of the thermoelectric current, the peltier element will switch from being a heating element to being a cooling element. To further increase the operable temperature range and accuracy of the temperature control, it may be advantageous to include two or more thermoelectric elements, such as a double stacked peltier element. To improve the temperature control, efficiency and temperature range of the peltier element, the peltier element may further be combined with a heat sink which may be operated with forced air, in the form of an air fan 23 as shown in Figure 2, or operated by passive air. In an embodiment of the invention, the first temperature control system comprises at least one thermoelectric element 15 in thermal communication with the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the thermoelectric element is configured for being both heating and cooling element.. In a further embodiment, the thermoelectric element is configured as respectively a heating element and a cooling element depending on the direction of the provided thermoelectric current. In a further embodiment, the thermoelectric element is a peltier element, and optionally is a multiple of stacked peltier elements, such as a double stacked peltier element. Figure 2 shows an embodiment of a device, where the thermoelectric element is a peltier element in thermal communication with the extraction chamber. This is obtained by the peltier element forming a solid contact with the thermally conducting bottom wall of the extraction chamber, which is not insulated. Thus, in an embodiment of the invention, at least a part of one of the inner walls of the extraction chamber is in thermal contact with a peltier element.
Alternatively, the thermoelectric element may be in thermal communication with the extraction chamber via the solvent reactant entering the extraction chamber. Figure 1 shows an embodiment of the device, where the thermoelectric element may be in thermal contact with an inlet tube, connected to the inlet port of the extraction chamber. Thus, in this embodiment, the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled by controlling the temperature of the inlet, or in-line, solvent reactant.
Improved temperature control within the extraction chamber may be obtained, for the alternative where the thermoelectric element is in thermal communication with the solvent reactant in-line, i.e. before the solvent reactant enters the extraction chamber. In this second alternative, all walls, including the bottom wall, of the extraction chamber are advantageously covered by an insulating material, thus enabling improved temperature control and temperature stability within the extraction chamber. Thus, the second alternative is advantageously combined with a lower thickness of the insulating material covering the extraction chamber wall.
In an embodiment of the invention, the thermal communication between the
thermoelectric element and the extraction chamber is a solid contact between the thermoelectric element and a wall of the extraction chamber, optionally at least a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber.
In another embodiment of the invention, the thermoelectric element is in thermal contact with the solvent reactant entering the at least one port or inlet of the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the thickness of the insulating material covering the extraction chamber walls is between 0.5 to 3 cm, more preferably 0.5 to 2 cm, such as essentially 2 cm, or 0.5 to 1 cm. To improve the operation range and precision of a peltier element, the peltier element may be mounted on a thermally conductive heat sink. The heat sink may be cooled using an air fan 23 that forces air through the heat sink and removes the heat generated by the Peltier element, as illustrated in Figure 2. In an embodiment of the invention, the peltier element comprises a thermally conductive heat sink, such as an extruded aluminium heat sink.
Further to improve the operation range and precision of a peltier element, a thermal resistance may be included from the hot side of the heatsink to air. For example a thermal resistance of 0.15 W/K may be used. In an embodiment of the invention, the peltier element further comprises a thermal resistance.
To improve the assembly and thermal communication between the thermoelectric element and the extraction chamber, it may be advantageous to cover the surfaces of the peltier element with a small amount of thermal grease on both sides before the chamber is mounted, which may improve the performance of the Peltier element. The inner chamber is pressed slightly against the Peltier element and the heat sink. A compression force of 5 N is optimal.
The peltier element according to the invention may act as both a heating and cooling element. This may be obtained by connecting the peltier element electrically in such a way that the current flow can be reversed. In reversing the current the Peltier can either cool the inner chamber or heat it.
Extraction chamber - Flow control The efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process is affected by both the type of solvent reactant, and the energy state of the solvent present. Thus, higher efficiency, or extraction yield, may be obtained if the solvent reactant is in a higher energy state, such as an agitated state. It may therefore be advantageous to have a stirrer placed within the extraction chamber. However, stirrers such as a magnetic stirrer, requires increased dimensions, and further increase the cost and complexity of the device.
A compact and efficient extraction chamber may be obtained by including a stirrer for stirring the content of the extraction chamber, where the stirrer is placed outside the extraction chamber. For example, stirring or agitation of the content in the extraction chamber may be obtained by pumping liquid in and out of the inlet of the extraction chamber. Figure 2 shows an embodiment of a stirrer placed outside the extraction chamber, where the first circulation unit, which is placed outside the extraction chamber, acts as a stirrer. The first circulation unit may be a reversible displacement pump, such as a reversible peristaltic pump, and the stirring is then obtained by pumping liquid repeatedly, and optionally with a high frequency, in and out of the inlet of the extraction chamber. Sufficient stirring may be obtained by operating the reversible pump with an in and out flow between 50-150 mL/min. Sufficient stirring may further be obtained by having a frequency of flow inversions between 1 -60 per minute. Sufficient stirring may further be obtained by pumping a smaller volume of liquid in and out of the inlet, such as below 25 ml_. To avoid contamination of the solvent reactant supply, such as the storage chamber, it is advantageous that the pump is restrictively operated in the reverse mode, i.e. only a pre-defined volume of liquid is pumped out of extraction chamber, such that only the communication line between the pump and extraction chamber is filled with the fluid from the extraction chamber. The second circulation unit may also be configured for agiation. By reversing the flow, air is moved from the evaporation chamber and introduced at the bottom of the extraction chamber, thus causing the liquid to agitate. Example 1 further describe how agitation generated by the first circulation unit, in the form of a peristaltic pump, may increase the extraction yield, or efficiency, by up to 33% compared to the extraction yield, where the pump was not activated.
In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a stirrer for stirring the content of the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment, the stirrer is placed outside the extraction chamber. In a further embodiment of the invention, the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer. In a further embodiment, the first circulation unit is a reversible displacement pump, optionally a reversible peristaltic pump. In a further embodiment, the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the flow optionally is between 50-150 mL/min, more preferably between 70-130 mL/min, or 60-120 mL/min, and most preferably of essentially 100 mL/min. In a further embodiment, the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the volume of the flow is below 20 mL, more preferably below 10 mL, and most preferably essentially 5 mL.
In a further embodiment, the frequency of reversible in and out flows corresponds to between 1 -60 flow inversions per minute, more preferably between 10-30 flow inversions per minute. In a further embodiment, the volume of the reversible liquid flow is below 25 mL, more preferably below 10 mL, and most preferably below 5 mL.
In another embodiment, the second circulation unit is reversed and air is pumped from the evaporation chamber and into the extraction chamber. This causes agitation and increases the extraction efficiency. The flow rate may be between 10 to 500 mL / min, more preferably between 50 and 250 and preferably 100 mL / min.
To further control the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process, it is
advantageous to control the duration of the solvent and plant material interaction. Thus, it is advantageous to control the flow from the extraction chamber outlet and to the evaporation chamber. The flow from the extraction chamber outlet may be controlled by a second circulation unit 16, which may be a second displacement pump or peristaltic pump. Advantageously, the second circulation unit is a non-reversible pump, such that volatiles from the evaporation chamber cannot be transferred to the extraction chamber by accident. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a second circulation unit 16 configured to control the flow between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the evaporation chamber.
To minimize the risk of solid plant material being transferred to the evaporation chamber, a filter 17 may be placed adjacent to the extraction chamber outlet. Furthermore, the plant material may be placed in a sample filter 24, for example in the same manner as a tea bag, to minimize the risk of solid plant material being transferred to the evaporation chamber. The sample filter may e.g. be a metallic filter, or any other material that is stable in the solvent and the temperature conditions.
In a further embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a second filter 17 configured for filtering the flow exiting the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber, optionally placed between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the second circulation unit. The secondary filter may be placed in-line within the communication line, optionally in a removable manner, such that it may be inserted after need. Advantageously, the second filter may filter and capture plant material that are freely dispersed within the extraction chamber. To minimize the amount of freely dispersed plant material, the device advantageously comprises a sample filter 24 configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber. In an embodiment of the invention, the second filter has a mesh size of between 1 to 900 microns, more preferably between 10 to 500, 50 to 300, or 70 to 200 microns, most preferably essentially 100 microns.
The solvent reactant supplied to the extraction chamber may be transferred from a liquid reservoir, such as the storage chamber illustrated in Figure 2. Advantageously, the solvent is injected slowly, and at a rate where the temperature of the solvent is close to the temperature of the extraction chamber. In addition, or alternatively, the solvent is adjusted to a predefined temperature in line, before it is injected into the extraction chamber.
The solvent mixture, or solution, formed within the extraction chamber may be transferred, or drained, from the extraction chamber outlet to the evaporation chamber in a fluid communication line, such as a tube 16, 20 as shown in Figure 2. The transfer may be automatically controlled by the liquid pressure, or by using a valve. Thus, advantageously, the extraction chamber outlet is placed at a lower portion of the extraction chamber, such as near the bottom, of the extraction chamber, as illustrated in Figures 1-2. In an embodiment of the invention, the extraction chamber outlet is placed at a lower portion of the extraction chamber. The valve may be controlled and operated from the central processing unit. The extraction chamber outlet may be in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber, via a pipe and a valve. When the valve is open, the liquid from the extraction chamber is drained fully into the evaporation chamber. In a further embodiment, the extraction chamber outlet is in fluid communication with a valve, such as an electrically operated valve.
Alternatively, the transfer or draining is controlled by the liquid pressure within the extraction chamber. This may be obtained when a lower portion of the extraction chamber is connected to a pipe that is shaped to function like a siphon valve, as illustrated in Figure 1 . When the highest liquid point rises above the height of the siphon valve, the liquid is drained into the evaporation chamber. To ensure efficient draining, the lowest point of the siphon valve is advantageously at least 20 mm below the lowest liquid level in the evaporation chamber.
Evaporation chamber
A compact and energy efficient evaporation chamber may be obtained by restricting the operation of the evaporation of the chamber to when there is solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber. For example, the presence of solvent reactant may be effectively detected by monitoring the temperature of the chamber. As long as there is solvent present, the temperature of the evaporation chamber will be maintained at the boiling temperature of the solvent. When all solvent present has been
evaporated, the phase change will be associated with a rapid temperature increase. Thus, based on the monitored temperature change, the operation of the evaporation chamber may be stopped. The temperature of the evaporation may be monitored by a thermal sensor connected, or placed in direct thermal contact, with the chamber, for example placed on an externally surface of the evaporation chamber.
In an embodiment of the invention, the second temperature control system is configured to operate when there is solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber. In a further embodiment, the second temperature control system is configured to stop operating when there is no solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber. To improve the temperature control and efficiency of the evaporation chamber, the chamber advantageously comprises a thermally conductive material that further does not react with the solvent reactant, i.e. is chemically inert to the solvent reactant and corresponding volatiles. Advantageously, the evaporation chamber comprises materials selected from the group of: copper, brass, aluminum, iron, and any combinations thereof.
The temperature of the evaporation chamber may be controlled by a second temperature control system, configured for evaporating the solvent reactant from the mixture, or solution, entering the evaporation chamber from the extraction chamber. Thus, the second temperature control system may comprise at least one heating element. Advantageously, the heating element is in thermal contact with a larger portion of the external surface wall of the evaporation chamber. The heating element may be a heating band 8 as illustrated in Figure 2.
The amount of power used in the heating element, such as the heat band, may be controlled from a central processing unit. To further control the evaporation process, the evaporation chamber may comprise a thermal sensor that detects the temperature of the Evaporation chamber via the central processing unit.
For maintenance reasons, it may be advantageous to have direct access to the inner evaporation chamber. In an embodiment of the invention, the evaporation chamber comprises a detachably attached lid, such as cap which may be sealed with a bayonet socket, optionally made of a thermally conductive material. The cap may further be connected via an O-ring, to create a further liquid-tight seal, thereby preventing liquid from leaving the device prematurely.
A compact and energy efficient device may further be obtained by efficiently transferring the formed volatiles out of the evaporation chamber. The transfer may be driven by differences in vapor pressure or differences in chemical potential, from the evaporation chamber to the condenser. It is therefore advantageous that the volatiles do not condense within the fluid communication 21 between the evaporation chamber and condenser. Thus, it is advantageous that the fluid communication line affects the temperature and vapor pressure to a minimum, e.g. by being relatively insulating and being dimensioned with a relatively large lumen. Thus, it is advantageous that the communication line is made of a material having a low thermal conductivity to avoid creating a thermal bridge between the evaporation chamber and the condenser.
Furthermore, it is advantageous that the communication line is made of material that is resistant towards the gaseous solvents at various pressures, such as atmospheric pressure. Examples of gaseous solvents that the communication line should tolerate include: ethanol with a boiling point of 78°C, and isopropanol with a boiling point of 80°C. In an embodiment of the invention, the fluid communication between the evaporation chamber and the condenser is a tube, wherein the tube material has a thermal conductivity below 410 W/(m K) at 25 °C, more preferably below 50 W/(m K) at 25 °C. In a further embodiment, the tube material is selected from the group of: copper, steel, stainless steel, and polyethylene, and more preferably is stainless steel.
Condenser
A compact and energy efficient condenser may be obtained by restricting the operation of the condenser to when there is volatiles present within the condenser. In a similar manner as for the evaporation chamber, phase changes are associated with a rapid temperature change. Thus, by monitoring the temperature of the condenser, the run out and absence of volatiles within the condenser will be associated with a rapid temperature change.
In an embodiment of the invention, the condenser is configured to operate when there are volatiles present. In a further embodiment, a thermal sensor is in thermal connection with the condenser, for example placed directly on an external surface of the condenser body, which may be of aluminium.
Figures 3-8 show embodiments of a compact and efficient condenser. Figure 3 shows an embodiment in a perspective view from the top. Figure 4 shows the embodiment in perspective view from the bottom. Figure 5 shows the embodiment from the top. Figure 5 shows the embodiment from the side, where the condensed liquid exits, and Figure 6 shows the embodiment from the side, where the vapor enters. Figure 8 shows the embodiment from the bottom. The embodiment shown in Figure 3 comprises an adjustable speed fan 18 for air supply, and a heatsink 19, which may be formed by extrusion. The heatsink is a plate having a corrugated surface side, and a planar surface side. The corrugated surface side is facing the air supply, or speed fan, whereby the higher surface area ensures an efficient cooling. The vapor to be condensed flows within an opening of the condenser. The opening where the phase transformation from vapor to condensate occurs is also referred to as the condenser. To improve the efficiency of the condenser, the opening is advantageously placed at the corrugated surface side of the heat sink. Thus, the condenser may be said to be placed inside the volume of the heatsink. This is in contrast to a heatsink, where the condenser is placed at an external surface of the heat sink, i.e. outside the effective volume of the heat sink.
In an embodiment of the invention, the condenser 9 is an air cooled condenser. The air cooled condenser may be operated passively or actively by use of e.g. an air fan. In a further embodiment of the invention, the condenser comprises an air fan 18 opposing a heat sink 19 with a corrugated surface side and a planar surface side, and wherein the condenser is configured such that condensate is formed at the corrugated surface side of the heat sink. The corrugated surface side of the condenser may also be described as an array of cooling fins that allows heat to dissipate from the body, as illustrated in Figure 3. The gaseous and liquid solvent mixture flow through the opening, or hole through the condenser, whereby the mixture dissipates heat to the surrounding metal. The hole needs to be large enough to avoid clogging of the solvent. The condenser is further advantageously dimensioned to dissipate enough energy from the gaseous solvent to condense it into a liquid close to room temperature. In an embodiment of the invention, the opening of the condenser is between 1 to 20 mm, more preferably between 5 to 15 mm, and most preferably essentially 8 mm. A compact and efficient condenser may be obtained by mounting the condenser in an upright position, such that the condensed solvent will trickle freely down into the liquid reservoir, such that no further flow controls are needed.
The efficiency of the condenser facilitates that a relatively small, a low-powered condenser, may be applied. In a further embodiment the condenser is configured to dissipate an effect between 50-1000 W, more preferably between 100-500 W, or 200- 400 W, and most preferably essentially 300 W. In a further embodiment, the condenser is configured to dissipate an effect between 0.005 to 10 W/mL solvent reactant, more preferably between 0.5 to 2.0 W/mL solvent reactant, where the amount of solvent reactant is the amount present in the extraction chamber.
The amount of energy dissipated corresponds to the amount of energy provided by the heating element in the evaporation chamber. The condenser may further be operated depending on the solvent reactant used within the device. To improve the energy efficiency and compactness of the device, it is further advantageous to apply a solvent reactant that is liquid at room temperature, such that additional temperature control units are not needed. In a further embodiment, the condenser is configured to produce condensate having a temperature between 10- 50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
For easy and flexible fabrication of the condenser, the condenser or heat sink is advantageously made of a metal with high thermal conductivity and that may be formed by extrusion. Examples of such metals include: aluminium, brass, copper, steel and titanium. In a preferred embodiment, the condenser or heat sink is made of aluminium, optionally a surface treated aluminium.
The efficient condenser advantageously comprises a thermally conductive material. Examples of suitable materials for a condenser include: aluminum, brass, copper, and any combination thereof. In a preferred embodiment, the condenser is made of aluminum.
The condenser is in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber through a communication line 21 , which may be a tube as illustrated in Figures 1-2. For the efficiency of the device, it is advantageous that the tube has a certain inner diameter, such that the gaseous solvent may freely enter the condenser. In an embodiment of the invention, the communication line 21 has an inner diameter of between 20 to 10 mm, more preferably essentially 15 mm. The opening, or hole, where the vapor to be condensed is flowing, may
advantageously be cone-shaped, such that the the size, or diameter, of the opening is different between the side where the vapor enters, and the side where the condensate exits. Figures 3, 4 and 7 show embodiments of an opening that is cone-shaped.
Preferably, the opening is larger at the side where the vapor enters, such that the gaseous solvent may enter the condenser freely and without generating a pressure drop upon entering. The opening at the side, where the condensed liquid is carried away from the condenser may have a smaller diameter. In a preferred embodiment, the opening of the condenser has a cone-shape. In a preferred embodiment, the diameter of the opening on the vapor side is 15 mm, and the diameter of the opening on the condensate side is 8 mm.
Storage chamber
For energy efficiency, the device is advantageously not operated continuously. To enable the device to operate when the user needs it instead of continuously, it is advantageous with a reservoir for the solvent. Thus, the condensate is advantageously stored in a storage chamber. To further improve the energy efficiency and
compactness of the device, it is advantageous to apply a solvent reactant that is liquid at room temperature, such that additional temperature control units are not needed within the storage chamber.
In an embodiment, wherein the storage chamber 10 is configured to contain the condensated solvent reactant, wherein the condensate has a temperature between 10- 50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
To ensure easy and fluid communication between the condenser and storage chamber, it is further advantageous that the communication line has a certain diameter, such that blockage or clogging is avoided. In an embodiment of the invention, the fluid
communication between the condenser and storage chamber is a tube 22, wherein the inner diameter of the tube is between 1-20 mm, more preferably between 5-10 mm, and most preferably is essentially 6 mm. In a further preferred embodiment, the outer diameter of the tube 22 is between 2-25 mm, more preferably between 5-10 mm, and most preferably is essentially 8 mm. For safety and robustness, it is advantageous that the storage chamber is compatible and does not react with the solvent reactant, i.e. is chemically inert. The solvent reactants may be: water, methanol, ethanol, propanol, isopropanol, butanol, butane, propane, heptane, hexane, chloroform, dichloromethane, tetrachloromethane, acetone, formaldehyde, acetic acid, alcohols, and any combinations thereof. An example of a material that is chemically inert especially towards the lighter alcohols include:
polyethylene (PE). In an embodiment of the invention, the storage chamber is made of a polymeric material, such as polyethylene (PE), or a glass material, such as Pyrex. For operational safety, it is advantageous that the volatiles and solvents may escape in case of overpressure. Thus, in an embodiment of the invention, the device further comprises a pressure relief valve. The pressure relief valve can be placed anywhere in the device to avoid pressure building up. However, advantageously, the pressure relief valve is placed in a part where volatiles may be present, such as the evaporation chamber, condenser, storage chamber, or in any of the fluid communication lines. In an embodiment of the invention, the device comprises a pressure relief valve, optionally placed within the evaporation chamber, and/or condenser, and/or the storage chamber, and/or a fluid communication line. For maintenance and operation, it is advantageous that the liquid reservoir may be accessed. For example, additional liquid, or solvent reactant, may be needed upon repeated extraction cycles. In an embodiment of the invention, the storage chamber comprises a recloseable opening, such as a nozzle. The storage chamber may be in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, such that liquid from the storage chamber may be transferred to the extraction chamber. The transfer may occur in a communication line, such as a pipe. The transfer may further be controlled by a valve, such as a siphon valve. In addition, or alternatively, the transfer is controlled by a first circulation unit, e.g. a peristaltic pump, as illustrated in Figure 2. The circulation unit, or pump, may be controlled from a pump control interface, such as a microcontroller.
For a compact and efficient extraction device, and further for transferring the thermal energy efficiently from the liquid to the inner chamber, the solvent is advantageously injected to a bottom portion of the extraction chamber as illustrated in Figure 2. Figure 10 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 10(A) shows the device from a left view (left cross sectional view), Figure 10(B) from a top view, Figure 10(C) from a front view, Figure 10(D) from a bottom view, and Figure 10(E) from a right view (right cross sectional view.
Figure 1 1 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 1 1 (A) shows the device from the left view, where a part of the device is marked by A. Figure 1 1 (B) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as A in Figure 10(A). Figure 1 1 (C) shows an isometric view of the device. Figure 1 1 (D) shows the device from the right view, where a part of the device is marked by B. Figure 1 1 (E) shows an enlarged view of the part marked as B in Figure 10(D).
Figure 12 shows an embodiment of the device according to the present invention. Figure 12(A) shows an isometric view of the device. Figure 12(B) shows a back view of the device. Figure 12(C) shows a front view of the device.
The devices 1 of Figures 10-12 are seen to comprise: Extraction Chamber 2, Inlet 3, Outlet 4, First temperature control system 5, Pump or First circulation unit 6,
Evaporation Chamber 7, Heating Band or Second temperature control system 8,
Condenser 9, Liquid Tank or Storage Chamber 10, Detachable attachable lid 11 ,
Detachable attachable container or Oil Container 12, Extraction Chamber Walls 13, Insulation Material 14, Thermoelectric elemenent or Peltier element 15, Secondary Pump or Second Circulation Unit 16, Secondary Filter 17, Condensor Fan 18,
Condensor Heat Sink 19, Tube from Extraction Chamber to Evaporation Chamber 20 (not directly visible in Figures 10-12) Tube from Evaporation Chamber to Condensor 21 , Tube from Condensor to Storage Chamber 22, Extraction chamber sample filter or inner sample filter 24, Wooden base with display 25, Power supply 26, Control Electronics 27, Heat sink for thermoelectric element 28, Fan for thermoelectric element heatsink 29, Thin isolating material surrounding peltier, blocks heattransfer from heatsink to extraction chamber 30, Bayonet socket with o-ring 31 , and Wooden base 32. Figure 1 1 (F) further shows a break out view of the evaporation chamber 7.1 , and a break out view of the extraction chamber 2.1.
Method of operation The operation of the embodiments of extraction device according to the invention may include several steps, or stages, wherein each step may be manually, digitally, and/or automatically controlled. An embodiment of the invention describes a method for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising the following steps:
I. Providing a device for producing an extract of a plant material, such as the device according to the present disclosure, comprising an extraction chamber and an evaporation chamber,
II. Inserting a filter with plant material into the extraction chamber,
III. Drying said plant matter under elevated temperature,
IV. Cooling the inner chamber in the extraction chamber to sub zero
temperatures,
V. Injecting a solvent into said chamber at a rate that maintains the solvent at subzero temperatures,
VI. Soaking said plant material in said solvent,
VII. Filtering and draining solvent and plant extract into the evaporation chamber,
VIII. Heating and evaporating solvent,
IX. Condensing solvent and recovering plant extract.
Step I: Providing a device
The method is configured to be carried in a device for producing an extract of a plant material, such as the device according to the present invention, comprising an extraction chamber and an evaporation chamber.
In a preferred embodiment, the method is configured to be carried out in the device according to the present invention, such as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
Step II: Inserting plant material
The plant material is placed within the extraction chamber. Optionally and
advantageously, the plant material is first placed in a filter before being placed within the extraction chamber. The filter may be similar to a tea bag or a metallic filter, and facilitates control of the dispersion of the plant material within the chamber. Optionally, the plant material is in a dried state, and may be grinded to smaller pieces. For example the dried plant material may be lavender, rosemary, chili or cannabis, which is lightly crumbled and placed into the filter. In a preferred embodiment, the filter is configured to contain less than one ounce (corresponding to 28.35 g) of plant material.
As evident from Figure 2, the plant material (and filter) may be placed within the extraction chamber by removing the extraction chamber lid, inserting the material, and then closing the lid, which may be optionally sealed closed with a bayonet socket.
Step III: Drying plant matter
Optionally the plant material placed within the extraction chamber is further dried at elevated temperatures above room temperature. This may be obtained by heating the inner chamber of the extraction chamber to a temperature and duration, suitable for drying the inserted plant material. In a preferred embodiment, the plant material is subjected to a temperature between 25 to 100°C. The device may comprise a user interface configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber. In further embodiment, the user may control the drying
temperature and duration using a built-in display and user interface, and/or a wireless connection to a mobile device such as a computer or a phone. As shown in Figure 2, the temperature control system for the extraction chamber may comprise a heat source in the form of a peltier element with its polarity reversed.
Step IV: Controlling the temperature
Some plant components are extracted more selective if they are in contact with the solvent at a specific temperature. The extraction chamber is constructed of a heat conductive material that is cooled or heated to a specific temperature. For most alcohol extractions, a temperature range between -40°C and 70°C is suitable. Once the desired temperature is obtained, it is kept stable. The temperature of the extraction process may be controlled by either controlling the temperature of the extraction chamber and/or controlling the temperature of the solvent that is supplied ot the extraction chamber. Figure 1 shows an embodiment, where the temperature of the solvent is heated/cooled immediately before the solvent enters the inlet to the extraction chamber. Figure 2 shows an embodiment, where the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled by a thermoelectric element. In an embodiment of the invention, the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled to be between -40°C and 70°C.
For example, for extracting THC or CBD from a high purity from cannabis a
temperature between -30°C to 0°C is preferred, since it may result in higher extraction yield and/or selectivity, or may result in higher selectivity and avoid extracting chlorophyll that has a bitter taste. Extracting the plant material at a higher temperature will lead to an extract containing a broader spectrum of plant components, i.e. the selectivity of THC and CBD is decreased. In a further embodiment, the temperature of the extraction chamber is controlled to be between -40°C and 70°C.
The device may comprise a user interface configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber. In further embodiment, the user may control the temperature and duration using a built-in display and user interface, and/or a wireless connection to a mobile device such as a computer or a phone.
Step V: Injecting solvent
Figures 1 -2 shows embodiments, where the solvent reactant is injected into the extraction chamber using a first circulation unit or a pump. Advantageously, the solvent is injected slowly, and at a rate where the temperature of the solvent is close to the temperature of the extraction chamber. In addition, or alternatively, the solvent is adjusted to a predefined temperature in line, before it is injected into the extraction chamber. Advantageously, the solvent present in the extraction chamber is stirred, which may increase the extraction yield. The stirring may be obtained using a circulation unit, by pumping a volume of liquid into the chamber, reverse the pump direction and pump a small amount of liquid back into the tube. The direction of the pump is again set to forward and the solvent is re-injected at a high rate, causing agitating in the liquid and assisting the extraction. In an embodiment of the invention, the plant matter is soaked in combination with stirring of the solvent present.
In another embodiment the flow of the secondary circulation unit (16) is reversed and used to transfer air from the evaporation chamber to the bottom of the extraction chamber. This causes the extraction liquid to agitate and increases extraction efficiency.
The stirring may be obtained by a first circulation unit placed at the at least one inlet of the extraction chamber, and/or by a second circulation unit placed at the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber.
Step VI: Soaking plant matter
The plant matter is soaked in the injected solvent reactant for a predefined period of time. While soaking, the one or more circulation unit(s) may agitate the liquid by pumping solvent in and out of the extraction chamber. The agitation is done to assist the extraction of the plant matter.
Step VII: Draining solvent
Once the plant matter has soaked for a predefined time period, the liquid phase comprising the solvent and extracted components is drained out of the extraction chamber. This may be obtained by a second circulation unit, such as a pump, as shown in Figure 2. The liquid phase is drained into the evaporation chamber, while the solid plant matter used for the extraction is retained in the extraction chamber via the sample filter placed inside the extraction chamber. Any solid plant matter which are present outside the filter and suspended within the liquid phase, may be filtered out using a removable inline filter as illustrated in Figure 2.
Step VIII: Evaporating solvent
Once the evaporation chamber is filled with the liquid phase, i.e. the mixture of solvent and extract, the evaporation chamber is heated to separate the components of the mixture. This may be done by a band heater engaged to heat the evaporation chamber as illustrated in Figure 2. The temperature of the evaporation chamber may be monitored using a microcontroller, and the bandheater may be controlled to maintain the temperature of the chamber at a point close to the solvent boiling point. Another option for evaporating the liquid is to apply a vacuum to lower the boiling point. The vapor from the distillation may escape through an upper opening of the
evaporation chamber, and into a vapor tube, as illustrated in Figure 2. The vapor tube then optionally carries the solvent vapor into a condenser. The extracted plant components are left in evaporation chamber. Optionally, the extracts are collected in a removable cap once the majority of the solvent is distilled from the extraction broth, as illustrated in Figure 2.
The power to the band heater may be reduced during the last part of the distillation to avoid heating the evaporation chamber above the solvent boiling point and damage the plant extract product.
Step IX: Condensing solvent and recovering extract
The solvent vapor from the vapor tube may enter a condenser. In the condenser, the vapor may be cooled to room temperature by means of a heat sink with a fan built in to remove heat. Advantageously, the temperature of the heat sink is monitored from a microcontroller, and the fan speed is adjusted to keep the temperature of the heat sink low. The solvent vapor condenses into a liquid at this stage and may be returned to the extraction chamber, and/or to a liquid reservoir, or storage chamber.
Examples
The invention is further described by the examples provided below.
Example 1 : Effect of extraction temperature
An extraction device similar to the device embodied in Figure 2 was applied. 10 grams of the same cannabis plant material was inserted, and the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process (extracted THC or CBD) were investigated as a function of the extraction temperature.
Three different extractions temperatures were tested: -5°C, room temperature (ca. 25°C), and slightly above room temperature (ca. 30°C). All other extraction parameters were essentially identical. Images of the recovered extracts are shown in Figure 9, and the results are
summarized in Table 1.
Table 1.
Figure imgf000042_0001
The color of the extracts recovered using a higher extraction temperature is darker. The chemical composition of the extracts may further be analyzed using TLC (thin layer chromatography). It may be concluded that the cannabis extraction has a higher efficiency, at the lower extraction temperature. It may further be concluded that the cannabis extraction has a higher selectivity at the lower extraction temperature, e.g. the content of chlorofyl within the extract is reduced. Example 2: Effect of stirring
An extraction device similar to the device embodied in Figure 2 was applied. 5 grams of the same cannabis plant material was inserted, and the efficiency and selectivity of the extraction process (extracted THC or CBD) were investigated as a function of stirring and no stirring of the solvent within the extraction chamber was investigated. The extraction parameters and results are summarized in Table 2.
Table 2.
Figure imgf000042_0002
By including stirring, the extraction yield was increased by 33%.
Example 3: Peltier cooling parameters .„
41
The cooling effect of a peltier element depends on the current applied. However, it was found that the cooling effect is not linearly dependent on the amount of current. Table 3 shows the cooling effect (i.e. the temperature on the side of the peltier element in contact with the extraction chamber, Tbottom) as a function of the applied current in watts.
Table 3.
Figure imgf000043_0001
The best result was not with the higest wattage applied as expected. By lowering the peltier current to 60 W the temperature inside the extraction chamber (Tbottom) was lowered to -33,45. This is because the heat given off by the peltier element (Thot) heats up the heatsink beyond its capabilities.
Example 4: Extraction chamber insulation - thickness
The device as shown in Figure 2 was tested using different thicknesses of PUR isolation on the vertical walls of the extraction chamber. For a thickness of 2 cm insulation it was found that the system has a heat loss of 6 watts if there is a 35 degree Celsius temperature difference between the liquid and the ambient temperature. This heatloss is within the limits of what the Peltier element can remove.
Example 5: Extraction chamber insulation - material
Samples of the insulation PUR foam for the extraction chamber were soaked in solvent reactant, such as ethanol, to test the resistance of the foam towards degradation. No visible signs of degradation was observed for PUR foam soaked in ethanol for up seven consecutive days. After drying the material, it retained all of its isolating properties.
Reference numbers
1 - Device
2 - Extraction chamber
3A - Opening configured for fluid transfer
3B - Split tube
3 - Inlet 4 - Outlet
5 - First temperature control system
6 - First circulation unit
7 - Evaporation chamber
8 - Second temperature control system
9 - Condenser
10 - Storage chamber
1 1 - Lid
12 - Container
13 - Extraction chamber walls
14 - Extraction chamber insulation
15 - Thermoelectric element
16 - Second circulation unit
17 - Second filter
18 - Air fan for condenser
19 - Heat sink
20 - Fluid communication line between extraction chamber and evaporation chamber
21 - Fluid communication line between evaporation chamber and condenser
22 - Fluid communication line between condenser and storage chamber
23 - Air fan for peltier
24 - Sample filter
25 - Wooden base with display
26 - Power supply
27 - Control Electronics
28 - Heat sink for thermoelectric element
29 - Fan for thermoelectric element heatsink
30 - Extraction chamber insulation, bottom thermal break, Thin isolating material surrounding peltier, blocks heattransfer from heatsink to extraction chamber
31 - Bayonet socket with o-ring
32 - Wooden base
References
[1 ] US 9,327,210 B1

Claims

Claims
1 . A device (1 ) for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising:
an extraction chamber (2) adapted to contain the plant material and a solvent reactant, said chamber comprising at least one port configured such that fluid is able to circulate into and/or out from the extraction chamber via the at least one port, at least one first circulation unit (6) configured to transfer solvent reactant to the at least one port of the extraction chamber,
an evaporation chamber (7) in fluid communication with the extraction chamber, configured to receive a mixture of plant extract and solvent reactant from the extraction chamber, and further configured to evaporate at least a part of the solvent reactant from the received mixture.
The device according to claim 1 , wherein the at least one port is configured to be bidirectional thereby providing both a flow inlet and flow outlet of the extraction chamber.
The device according to claim 2, wherein the at least one port is in fluid communication with a split tube (3B), wherein at least a first lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow inlet (3), and at least a second lumen of the split tube is configured as a flow outlet (4).
The device according to claim 1 , comprising at least two ports, wherein the first port (3) is configured as a flow inlet, and the second port (4) is configured as a flow outlet.
The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a first temperature control system (5), configured to control the temperature of the extraction chamber.
The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a second temperature control system (8) and/or a vacuum control system configured for evaporating at least a part of the solvent from the received mixture. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first circulation unit comprises one or more flow controllers selected from the group of: displacement pumps, peristaltic pumps, gas pressure driven pumps, gravity driven pumps in combination with a valve, such as a solenoid valve or digitally operated solenoid valve.
8. The device according any of the preceding claims, further comprising a
condenser (9) in fluid communication with the evaporation chamber, and configured for receiving and condensing the evaporated solvent reactant.
9. The device according to claim 8, configured for recycling the condensate from the condenser to the extraction chamber, thereby providing recycled solvent reactant to the extraction chamber. 10. The device according to any of claims 8-9, further comprising a storage
chamber (10) in fluid communication with the condenser and the first circulation unit, and adapted for storing the condensate from the condenser.
1 1. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber further comprises a detachably attached lid (1 1 ) adapted for providing and/or removing plant material to/from the extraction chamber.
12. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a sample filter (24) configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm, more preferably between 0.1 to 30 mm, 0.2 to 2 mm, or 0.5 to 3 mm, and most preferably is essentially 1 mm.
13. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a sample filter (24) configured for controlling the dispersion of the plant material within the extraction chamber, optionally the sample filter is a metal filter and/or with a mesh size of between 0.01 to 50 mm(10 to 50.000 microns), more preferably between 0.02 to 30 mm(20 to 30.000 microns), 0.03 to 2 mm(30 to 2.000 microns), or 0.04 to 0.1 mm (40 to 100 microns), and most preferably is essentially 0.1 mm (100 microns).
14. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the evaporation chamber further comprises a detachably attached container (12) adapted for containing and recovering the extract from the plant material, and optionally a part of the solvent reactant.
15. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum height of the assembly of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum height of 500, 490, 470, or 460 mm, such as a maximum height of essentially 455 mm.
16. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum volume of 1000 L, more preferably a maximum volume of 500, 300, 200, 100, 50, or 40 L, and most preferably a maximum volume of 30 or 20 L, such as a maximum volume of essentially 19.5 L.
17. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum base area or footprint of 1 m2, more preferably a maximum base area of 0.6, 0.4, or 0.2 m2, and most preferably a maximum base area of 0.1 , or 0.05 m2, such as a maximum footprint of essentially 0.0424 m2.
18. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum width of 600 mm, more preferably a maximum width of 500, 450, 400, 350, 300 mm, and most preferably a maximum width of 200 mm, such as a maximum width of essentially 180 mm.
19. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the parts of the device are incorporated in an assembly reaching a maximum depth or length of
600 mm, more preferably a maximum depth of 500, 490, 450, 400 mm, and most preferably a maximum depth of 300 mm, such as a maximum length of essentially 320 mm.
20. The device according to any of the preceding claims, configured as a domestic device for a household, such as a kitchen device.
21. The device according to any of claims 1 1 -20, wherein the lid (1 1 ) and/or the container (12) comprises a thermally insulating material, such as material with a thermal conductivity below 5, 3, or 1 W/(m K) at 25 °C, and optionally is made of wood.
22. The device according to any of claims 14-21 , wherein the container (12) has the shape of a removable cap, such as a screw cap, bayonet socket or clip.
23. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain a solvent reactant that is an alcohol, preferably selected from the group of: ethanol, isopropanol, 1-propanol and 2- propanol.
24. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 50 g of plant material, more preferably below 40, 30, or 20 g of plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 15 g of plant material.
25. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain below 300 g of dried plant material, more preferably below 100, 50, or 30 g of dried plant material, and most preferably equal to or below 20.
26. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 700 ml. of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 500 ml_, and most preferably between 150 to 300 ml_, such as 200 ml_.
27. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain between 50 to 2000 ml. of solvent, more preferably between 100 to 700 ml_, and most preferably between 150 to 300 ml_, such as 200 ml_.
28. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : ml. solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:200.
29. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber is configured to contain a ratio between plant material and solvent reactant (g plant material : ml. solvent) of above 10:500, more preferably above 10:300, and most preferably equal to or above 10:100.
30. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the extraction chamber comprises walls (13) of a thermally conductive material, such as a material with a thermal conductivity above 50 W/(m K) at 25 °C or more preferably above 100 W/(m K) at 25 °C, such as aluminium (Al), surface treated aluminium, brass, and copper (Cu).
31. The device according to claim 30, wherein the walls of the extraction chamber have a thickness between 1 mm to 10 mm, more preferably between 2-8 mm, or 3-7 mm, and most preferably is essentially 5 mm.
32. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein at least a part of the extraction chamber walls are covered with a thermally insulating material (14), such as a material with a thermal conductivity below 30 W/(m K) at 25°C or more preferably below 10 or 5 W/(m K), such as polyurethane (PUR), a foam of PUR, aerogel, glass wool, Rockwool, styrofoam, and any combination thereof.
33. The device according to claim 32, wherein the vertical walls of the extraction chamber are covered with the insulating material.
34. The device according to any of claims 32-33, wherein the thickness of the
insulating material is between 0.5-5 cm, more preferably between 1-4 cm, or 1 - 3 cm, and most preferably is essentially 2 cm.
35. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the bottom wall of the extraction chamber is partly covered with an insulating material (30).
36. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first
temperature control system (5) is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -20°C to 99°C, more preferably between -20°C to 60°C, -15°C to 50°C, -5°C to 40°C, and most preferably is essentially -10°C, or 60°C.
37. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first
temperature control system (5) is configured such that the temperature of the extraction chamber is between -40°C to 99°C, more preferably between -40°C to 80°C, -35°C to 70°C, and more preferably is -30°C to 60°C.
38. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first
temperature control system is configured to generate a temperature profile over time within the extraction chamber.
39. The device according to claim 38, wherein the temperature profile comprises at least two periods with different temperature sets, such as a first period with a temperature set between 20°C to 99°C, and a second period with a temperature set between -20°C to 0°C.
40. The device according to claim 38, wherein the temperature profile comprises at least two periods with different temperature sets, such as a first period with a temperature set between 20°C to 99°C, and a second period with a temperature set between -40°C to 0°C.
41. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first
temperature control system comprises at least one thermoelectric element (15) in thermal communication with the extraction chamber.
42. The device according to claim 41 , wherein the thermoelectric element is
configured for being both heating and cooling element. 43. The device according to any of claims 41-42, wherein the thermoelectric
element is configured as respectively a heating element and a cooling element depending on the direction of the provided thermoelectric current.
44. The device according to any of claims 41-43, wherein the thermoelectric
element is a peltier element, and optionally is a multiple of stacked peltier elements, such as a double stacked peltier element.
45. The device according to any of claims 41 -44, wherein the thermal
communication between the thermoelectric element and the extraction chamber is a solid contact between the thermoelectric element and a wall of the extraction chamber, optionally at least a part of the bottom wall of the extraction chamber.
46. The device according to any of claims 41-44, wherein the thermoelectric
element is in thermal contact with the solvent reactant entering the at least one port of the extraction chamber.
47. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a stirrer for stirring the content of the extraction chamber.
48. The device according to claim 47, wherein the stirrer is placed outside the
extraction chamber.
49. The device according to any of claims 47-48, wherein the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer. 50. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the first
circulation unit is a reversible displacement pump, optionally a reversible peristaltic pump.
51. The device according to any claims 47-50, wherein the first circulation unit is configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the flow optionally is between 50-150 mL/min, more preferably between 70-130 mL/min, or 60-120 mL/min, and most preferably of essentially 100 mL/min.
52. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a second
circulation unit (16) configured to control the flow between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the evaporation chamber.
53. The device according to claim 52, wherein the second circulation unit is
configured as a stirrer by operating a reversible flow, wherein the flow optionally is between 50-150 mL/min, more preferably between 70-130 mL/min, or 60-120 mL/min, and most preferably of essentially 100 mL/min.
54. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a second filter (17) configured for filtering the flow exiting the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber, optionally placed between the at least one outlet of the extraction chamber and the second circulation unit, optionally the second filter has a mesh size of between 1 to 900 microns, more preferably between 10 to 500, 50 to 300, or 70 to 200 microns, most preferably essentially 100 microns.
55. The device according to any of claims 8-54, wherein the fluid communication between the evaporation chamber and the condenser is a tube, wherein the tube material has a thermal conductivity below 410 W/(m K) at 25 °C, more preferably below 50 W7(m K) at 25 °C.
56. The device according to claim 55, wherein the tube material is selected from the group of: copper, steel, stainless steel, and polyethylene, and more preferably is stainless steel.
57. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the second
temperature control system is configured to operate when there is solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber.
58. The device according to any of the preceding claims, wherein the second
temperature control system is configured to stop operating when there is no solvent reactant present within the evaporation chamber.
59. The device according to any of claims 8-58, wherein the condenser (9) is an air cooled condenser.
60. The device according to any of claims 8-59, wherein the condenser is
configured to dissipate an effect between 50-1000 W, more preferably between 100-500W, or 200-400 W, and most preferably essentially 300 W.
61. The device according to any of claims 8-60, wherein the condenser is
configured to dissipate an effect between 0.005 to 10 W/mL solvent reactant, more preferably between 0.5 to 2.0 W/mL solvent reactant.
62. The device according to any of claims 8-61 , wherein the condenser is configured to produce condensate having a temperature between 10-50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
63. The device according to any of claims 59-62, wherein the condenser comprises an air fan (18) opposing a heat sink (19) with a corrugated surface side and a planar surface side, and wherein the condenser is configured such that condensate is formed at the corrugated surface side of the heat sink.
64. The device according to any of claims 8-63, wherein the condenser is
configured to operate when there is volatiles present.
65. The device according to any of claims 10-64, wherein the storage chamber (10) is configured to contain the condensated solvent reactant, wherein the condensate has a temperature between 10-50°C, and more preferably between 15-40°C, and most preferably between 25-30°C.
66. The device according to any of claims 10-65, wherein the storage chamber (10) is made of a polymeric material, such as polyethylene (PE), or a glass material.
67. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a pressure relief valve, optionally placed within the evaporation chamber, and/or condenser, and/or the storage chamber, and/or a fluid communication line.
68. The device according to any of claims 8-67, wherein the fluid communication between the condenser and storage chamber (10) is a tube, wherein the inner diameter of the tube is between 1 -20 mm, more preferably between 5-10 mm, and most preferably is essentially 6 mm.
69. The device according to any of the preceding claims, comprising a user
interface configured to control the temperature profile of the extraction chamber, and optionally control the temperature profile of the evaporation chamber, and the operation of the condenser, and circulation unit(s).
70. A method for producing an extract of a plant material, comprising the steps of:
- providing the device according to any of claims 1 -69,
- inserting plant material into the extraction chamber, wherein the plant material optionally is placed within a sample filter, - optionally drying the plant material at a temperature above 20°C,
- cooling the extraction chamber to a temperature below 0°C,
- injecting a solvent reactant into the extraction chamber,
- soaking the plant material in the solvent reactant, thereby producing a fluid extract,
- draining the fluid mixture of solvent reactant and extract into the evaporation chamber,
- evaporating the solvent reactant from the fluid mixture, thereby separating and recovering the extract,
- optionally condensing the evaporated solvent reactant,
whereby an extract of the plant material is produced. Use of the device according to any of claims 1-69 for producing an extract of a plant material.
PCT/EP2018/063468 2017-05-24 2018-05-23 Domestic household device for plant extraction WO2018215520A1 (en)

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CN113150874A (en) * 2021-06-01 2021-07-23 李小琴 Plant extraction and distillation device based on layered separation technology
CN113908586A (en) * 2021-10-28 2022-01-11 安徽瞳清堂生物科技有限公司 Traditional Chinese medicine extraction equipment and method for eye cold compress gel production
CN117180798A (en) * 2023-11-06 2023-12-08 广州市鼎添生物医药科技有限公司 Separation equipment and separation method for separating negative ion essence from plants
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