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Hemp Extraction by Ultrasonic Equipment

Hemp and Hemp Oil

The plant Cannabis sativa is distinguished into two main species, hemp and marijuana. Both contain CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). CBD is well known for its beneficial medical effects, acting anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety, whilst THC is mostly known for its psychoactive abilities, which cause the so-called ‘high’. Hemp contains a significantly higher percentage of CBD, while THC is found only in trace amounts. This makes hemp the predestined source to produce high-quality CBD extracts, which are therefore also known as hemp extracts. CBD does not cause “high” effects, but its use can have relaxing effects and reduce anxiety and depression.
Hemp extracts are rich in cannabinoids such as CBD and CBG as well as terpenes – substances, which are known for their positive effects on health and well-being. Hemp extracts contain mainly non-psycho-active substances. THC, which is known for its psycho-active effects, is found in hemp in minimal concentrations of less than 0.3%. THC in such low dosis is negligible and produces no noticeable effects in the human body.

Hemp Extraction

CBD is one of many phytochemicals in the hemp plant. These phyto-compounds are encapsulated in the vegetal cells of the plant. In order to produce hemp extract such as CBD oils, tinctures, capsules, lotions, creams or other supplements, the CBD must be extracted and isolated. To release the valuable cannabinoids such as CBD, CBG and terpenes from hemp, an extraction process is required. Hemp extracts can be produced via various methods such as ethanol extraction, hydrocarbon extraction, or supercritical CO2 extraction. A very efficient, rapid, safe and easy-to-operate technique of hemp extraction is the ultrasonic extraction.

  • Higher yield
  • Superior quality
  • No thermal degradation
  • Rapid extraction
  • Simple and Safe Operation
  • Green Extraction

Hemp Oil Extraction Process

Hemp oil or cannabis oil is a term often used for the isolated CBD oil from the hemp or cannabis plant, respectively.
There are two types of CBD oil production, which result in two different products. One is by isolating exclusively the CBD to produce a CBD isolate. The other type of CBD production results in full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD. Full-spectrum CBD is produced from the hemp leaves, stems, or flowers and gives a pure oil containing the full spectrum of all cannabinoids and terpenes in the hemp plant. Full-spectrum CBD oils have the benefit of the so-called entourage effect. The entourage effect describes the interplay of the manifold other cannabinoids besides CBD. The extraction of full-spectrum CBD oil is often the preferred process, because the full spectrum extract contains not only the benefits of CBD but also of all the other cannabinoids found in the plant.
Ultrasonic hemp extractors can be used to manufacture both types of CBD oils, CBD isolates and full-spectrum CBD oils.

Hemp Oil Extraction Methods and Equipment

How is CBD oil manufactured? In order to extract CBD oil from the cannabis or hemp plant, the cannabinoids such as CBD and CBG must be released from the cell matrix of the hemp material. There are several types of extraction equipments available. The most popular hemp extractors are ultrasonic CBD extractors, supercritical CO2 extraction, hydrocarbon extraction, and conventional solvent extraction (e.g. ethanol, methanol). Ultrasonic hemp extraction has the strong advantage that the sonication technology can be used with various solvents including water, ethanol, water/ethanol mix, glycerine, vegetable oils etc. This gives the manufacturer a wide range of possibilities to optimize the extraction. By selecting a specific solvent, the hemp extract can be produced to meet specific targets such as yield, purity, or final product.
After the extraction process, the phyto-compounds of the hemp plant (e.g. CBD, CBG, other cannabinoids and terpenes) must be isolated by a distillation. For the distillation, the crude extract can be optionally winterized before it is run through a short path distillation or evaporator.

Ultrasonic extraction of hemp oils and CBD extracts

Ultrasonic Hemp Oil Extractors

Hielscher Ultrasonics supplies professional hemp extraction equipment for any production scale. Ultrasonic hemp extractors can release the complete range of cannabinoids and other valuable phyto-compounds such as terpenes from the hemp plant.

Guide for Ultrasonic Hemp Extraction

Hielscher Ultrasonics offers the ideal setup for your hemp extract production. For smaller and mid-size production scale, Hielscher batch extractors are a safe-bet for easy and rapid extraction of superior CBD oils.

Ultrasonic Batch Extractors for Hemp Oil

With the UP400St (400 watts), you get a powerful ultrasonic extractor, which easily processes up to approx. 2gal per batch. The setup and operation of the UP400St is quick and simple and allows for a fast processing of manifold smaller lots in row. The sonication duration for a 2 gallon beaker of hemp slurry takes 2-5 min. Since the change between the batches is so simple and quickly done, the UP400St is capable to process up to 20 gallons per hour.
The picture on the right shows the ultrasonic hemp extractor UP400St for the extraction of cannabinoids such as CBD from industrial hemp in an 8L (1.8gal) beaker. The mechanical stirrer on the left side promotes the macro-movements of the slurry for a uniform ultrasonic treatment of the hemp.
If your looking for an ultrasonic extractor capable to process larger barrels of hemp, the UP2000hdT (2000 watts, see pic. left) is the right hemp extraction equipment for you. Easy and safe to use as the UP400St, the UP2000hdT comes with 2000 watts ultrasonic power and can handle batch extractions of up to 26 gal barrels (120liters) per run.

Ultrasonic Inline Extractors for Hemp Oil

For highly professional CBD extraction from large lots of hemp on fully commercial scale, the installation of an ultrasonic inline extractor gives you really large production capacities. The UIP4000hdT is a 4000 watts powerful ultrasonic hemp extractor, equipped with flow cell which feeds the hemp directly into the ultrasonic cavitation field, where the cannabinoids are released from the plant cells. Depending on the hemp slurry and solvent concentration, the UIP4000hdT can easily process up to 2gal/min. The processing capacity can be easily increased by installing several units of the UIP4000hdT in parallel.
The UIP16000 comes with 16,000 watts ultrasonic power and processes up to 22gal/min.
All Hielscher ultrasonic extractors are designed and manufactured in Germany and fullfil highest quality standards. The are built for 24/7 operation under full load, robust, user-friendly and safe to operate. Digital touch-screens, automatic data protocolling, and browser remote control are just a few of the key features, which make Hielscher ultrasonic extractors the preferred ultrasonicators for hemp oil extraction.

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Ultrasonic extraction of hemp oil and CBD extracts with ultrasonicator UP400St

Literature/References

Why is Ultrasonic Extraction the Best Method?

Efficiency

  • Higher yields
  • Rapid extraction process – within minutes
  • High quality extracts – mild, non-thermal extraction
  • Green solvents (water, ethanol, glycerin, veget. oils etc.)

Simplicity

  • Plug-and-play – Set-up and operate within minutes
  • High throughput – For large scale extract production
  • Batch-wise or continuous inline operation
  • Simple installation and start-up
  • Portable / Movable – Portable units or built on wheels
  • Linear scale up – add another ultrasonic system in parallel to increase capacity
  • Remote monitoring and control – via PC, smart phone or tablet
  • No process supervision required – Set-up and run
  • High-Performance – designed for continuous 24/7 production
  • Robustness and low maintenance
  • High quality – designed and built in Germany
  • Quick load and discharge between lots
  • Easy to clean

Safety

  • Simple and safe to run
  • Solvent-less or solvent-based extraction (water, ethanol, vegetable oils, glycerin, etc.)
  • No high pressures and temperatures
  • ATEX-certified explosion-proof systems available
  • Easy to control (also via remote control)

Hemp Extract vs Hemp Oil vs Hemp Seed Oil

CBD oil is a concentrated extract from cannabis/hemp flowers or leaves that is dissolved in an inert carrier oil, mostly an edible oil such as MCT, coconut, sunflower, hemp seed, or olive oil. When the CBD oil is extracted from the hemp plant Cannabis sativa, it is therefore often called hemp extract or hemp oil. In comparison to the marijuana plant (which is high in THC and low in CBD), the industrial hemp plant contains large amounts of CBD and is therefore predestined for the production of CBD extracts. The term hemp oil is sometimes dually used for hemp-derived CBD extracts and hemp seed oil. However those both products – hemp CBD oil and hemp seed oil – are very different in their composition, effects and use.
Hemp seed oil is the vegetable oil, which is obtained by the cold pressing of hemp seeds. Hemp seeds do not contain CBD, but is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Hemp seed oil is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids for vegetarians and vegans and is used for cooking and cosmetics. Hemp seed oil should be listed as cannabis sativa seed oil, whilst CBD-containing oils are listed as cannabidiol, full-spectrum hemp, hemp oil, phytocannabinoid-rich (PCR) hemp extracts.

Hemp Extraction by Ultrasonic Equipment Hemp and Hemp Oil The plant Cannabis sativa is distinguished into two main species, hemp and marijuana. Both contain CBD (cannabidiol) and THC

What Is The Best Way To Extract CBD From Hemp?

Keep reading to find out how to extract CBD, and which method produces the highest-quality CBD oil. While they all harness the power of CBD, they don’t all achieve the same degree of purity.

Contents:

Why does CBD extraction matter?

To produce CBD oils, cosmetics or supplements, you must first extract the cannabinoid from raw plant material. Fortunately, the most abundant source of CBD is hemp, a selectively bred crop used extensively in dozens of commercial industries.

Although there are many ways to extract CBD from hemp, some methods are much more efficient and safer than others. It’s essential to know the difference, since how you extract CBD affects the purity and efficacy of the final product.

What are the options for extracting CBD?

Below, you will find a breakdown of some of the most common extraction techniques used, including their main pros and cons.

Solventless CBD extraction (by hand)

How does one make CBD extracts without using a solvent? Simply enough, you just have to apply heat, pressure, or a bit of friction to hemp flowers and leaves. How do you do that, you wonder? Well, if you freeze hemp flowers, you can shake the small trichomes loose and gather them together. These trichomes, as you might know, contain the full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes found in the hemp plant.

Pros of solventless extraction

• No additional equipment needed
• Makes use of the whole hemp plant
• Cheapest method of extraction

Cons of solventless extraction

• Yields are low and impractical
• No way of controlling purity, with minimal levels of CBD
• CBD extract contains plant material and unwanted cannabinoids

Olive oil CBD extraction

First, to perform olive oil extraction at home, you need to make sure your plant material is decarboxylated. In short, that means it undergoes the process of acidic cannabinoids being activated via heat. That, of course, happens when you smoke or vape it, but it can also happen if you put it in the oven.

Once decarboxylated, mix your plant matter with olive oil and heat it on the stove for several hours. CBD, other cannabinoids and essential terpenes will bind to the fats in the oil, creating an infused product. Finally, the mixture is left to cool before being filtered to remove any leftover plant material.

Pros of olive oil extraction

• Can be performed easily at home
• Relatively safe, with no previous extraction experience needed
• Greater degree of purity compared to solventless extraction

Cons of olive oil extraction

• Little control over the final extract
• Weak and unreliable CBD content compared to more professional methods
• Not suitable for commercial sale

Basic solvent CBD extraction

Solvent extraction is a rudimentary and risky practice, but it has fans. Essentially, it involves running a liquid solvent through decarboxylated hemp to remove cannabinoids and terpenes. The usual solvents include butane, ethanol, and hexane, so you need to safely evaporate any residual solvent post-extraction to ensure usable CBD extract.

Pros of solvent extraction

• Cheap and requires relatively small amounts of equipment
• Solvent CBD extracts have a respectable degree of purity
• Easy to scale for commercial production

Cons of solvent extraction

• Working with solvents can cause injury if not used correctly, they are highly flammable
• The oil can remain contaminated with solvent, which is dangerous for the end-user
• Higher temperatures risk destroying some essential terpenes and other smaller compounds

Supercritical CO₂ CBD extraction

In this method, CO₂ is manipulated to enter a supercritical state. With characteristics of both a gas and a liquid, it’s pumped through raw plant material under controlled conditions, stripping away essential terpenes and cannabinoids without damaging them.

Pros of supercritical CO₂ extraction

• Allows for the extraction of clean and safe concentrates without the use of additional additives or contaminants.
• Offers highly efficient yields, getting the most out of the hemp plant.
• CO₂ extraction is sustainable and environmentally friendly

Cons of supercritical CO₂ extraction

• Co₂ extraction is an industrial process, making it highly expensive
• Requires expertise to perform correctly

Which CBD extraction method is the best?

CO₂ extraction has significant advantages over other methods of producing CBD oil. First, you can pump supercritical CO₂ through hemp in such a way that it selectively picks up the cannabinoids and other compounds, leaving everything else behind.

Second, since it uses CO₂, it produces CBD oils free from chemicals and contaminants. And, when the extraction process is over, you can either reuse the CO₂ or release it safely back into the atmosphere. Thanks to this outstanding level of control, supercritical CO₂ has become a leading tool extraction and one that Cibdol uses to create all of its CBD extracts.

However, highly sophisticated extraction is only the beginning. Cibdol goes above and beyond for its customers, publishing a detailed analysis of every CBD product batch. Performed by an independent third-party, these analyses indicate levels of all common cannabinoids, allowing you to make the most informed decision possible.

You can browse the complete selection of our third-party tested CBD products from the Cibdol store, including CBD oils, cosmetics, supplements and isolates. Or, discover more about independent testing and what its means using our beginner-friendly CBD Encyclopedia.

If you want to learn more about extracting CBD, including which methods produces the highest-quality CBD oils, and which methods you should avoid.