What is chromatography?
Developed in 1903 by Italian-born botanist Mikhail Tswett, chromatography is a method used to separate out compounds from a substance. While used in the forensic and other sciences, chromatography is regarded as the preeminent purification method to remove pesticides and isolate phytocannabinoids, including THC, from CBD distillate.
Chromatography separates the components of a substance by pushing or pulling the substance across the surface of a stationary liquid or solid, enabling the components to be distinguished into disparate parts. Separation occurs from individual components moving at different rates over the stationary surface.
How does chromatography work?
There are many different methods of chromatography, which can use any of four types of stationary materials: liquid, gas, thin-layer, and paper. Liquid chromatography is best suited for THC remediation, as it is most effective for analyzing organic compounds in solutions. The liquid (eluent), often alcohol or water, acts as the carrier and brings the CBD distillate (analyte) through a column. When the liquid begins moving over the solid, molecules move between the surface and the liquid, with those passing through the liquid moving at a faster rate than those traveling closer to the surface. There is, however, an exchange throughout the process whereby molecules enter and exit between the liquid and surface phases, changing the speed of molecules throughout the process and separating out the various compounds at different speeds.
What are the most popular methods of removing THC?
The most commonly used process for THC remediation is chromatography, but some chromatography methods are better-suited for remediation than others. Many professional remediation labs use the traditional chromatography methods of high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) or Flash Chromatography. However, both these methods are ill-suited as long-term solutions for remediation for several reasons:
- HPLC and Flash Chromatography are too time-consuming, given the plant’s complexity and its 500+ compounds.
- They are both expensive processes due to their use of silica resin, which needs replacement every few weeks.
- These methods are slow due to their (at minimum) two-step procedure necessary to achieve quality CBD purification.
- Neither of these two methods is scalable.
Why Centrifugal partition chromatography is the best remediation method
Centrifugal partition chromatography (CPC) is superior to traditional chromatography methods for many reasons:
- CPC is less expensive than traditional chromatography methods because it uses a liquid stationary phase rather than silica.
- The liquid phase is less by volume than silica, allowing more crude extract to be injected per run.
- Using a liquid stationary phase allows CPC columns to be rinsed for reuse.
- CPC leaves no residues that could threaten the product’s purity.
- It requires less processing time than other methods, which means it doesn’t cost as much.
- It uses 3 to 5 times less solvent than other chromatography methods.
- The solvent can be recycled.
- Yields are purer using CPC, with extracts reaching nearly 100% purity and a recovery rate of over 90%.
Global Product Group’s THC remediation platform
Because CPC’s unmatched performance is the ideal in THC remediation, it is the chosen method of Global Product Group (GPG), which uses an industrial-scale CPC method called RotaChrom technology. It yields superior efficiency, is highly scalable, environmentally and economically sustainable, and offers a high-quality and high-throughput advantage. Our iCPC for industrial-scale purification has a capacity = 1,500 kilos per month and is the world’s largest centrifugal partition chromatography. RotaChrom is also cGMP compliant and silica-free.
The benefits of RotaChrom rCPC
This is our high-resolution, pilot-scale centrifugal partition chromatographic platform, which is ideal for our method development as well as for our pilot-scale purification. Through this platform, GPG has no limits on adapting the system for new downstream challenges from THC removal to CBN isolations to other small molecule CBD derivatives all on the same machine.
rCPC in the process chain
The benefits of RotaChrom iCPC
This is the largest centrifugal partition chromatographic instrument in the world. RotaChrom is the sole manufacturer and distributor of the industrial scale CPC instrument and provides various products and services facilitating downstream, large industrial-scale production. Our iCPC device provides many technical and economic advantages to our remediation needs.
CPC’s superior technology and benefits surpass that of traditional liquid chromatography systems such as HPLC and Flash as well as SMB, Ion Exchange, and even Chiral Chromatography and multi-step crystallization in most cases in terms of yield and purity. One of only three U.S. companies using RotaChrom technology in the CBD space, GPG’s technology, performance, and purity standard capabilities send it soaring above the competition for quality and price.