Streamlining Cannabis Post-Processing | Step-by-Step Guide

Ethanol Purge via CAT MCS78 Hotplate Stirrer

Regardless of your final product, eliminating ethanol from the solution is paramount. At CAT Scientific, we’ve tirelessly worked to outfit equipment and processes which streamline this essential process. Whether your solution is winterized or if you’re undertaking an ethanol extraction, the following procedure effectively eliminates ethanol from the cannabis solution without harming cannabinoid integrity.

In this step-by-step guide, we’re using the MCS78 Programmable Hotplate Magnetic Stirrer, which offers swift temperature elevations via PID algorithms and enhanced monitoring capabilities to minimize temperature overshoot. The actual processing time to purge ethanol from the cannabis solution will vary based upon unique batch characteristics, such as volume. Use the following as a general reference guide when completing this task.

 

Step One | Establish Safe Temperature Settings

Using the front-facing control panel, set the Probe Temp to 125°C and the Plate Temp to 225°C. Even though ethanol features a boiling point of 79.4°C, maximum probe temperature is set at 125°C  to ensure a rolling boil. Should the Probe Temp option be the same as ethanol’s boiling point, the MCS78 would automatically adjust the Plate Temp settings so the solution would be gradually heated to avoid overshooting the maximum set temperature. This would result in a gentle boil; however, for this process a rolling boil is optimal.

NOTE: If solution volume is greater than 500ml, temperatures will be increased accordingly.

Step Two | Motor-Speed Based On Solution Viscosity

On the CAT MCS78 control panel, set the Motor Speed between 60 and 70 RPM. Solution viscosity may require higher maximum motor speeds.

Step Three | In-Process Probe-Solution Temperature Manipulation

Based upon atmospheric conditions, the Probe Temp (and solution temperature) won’t surpass 79.4°C, until the bulk of ethanol has evaporated. When you notice the Probe Temp reaches 85°C, adjust its temperature setting to 50°C.

Due to the advanced-nature of the CAT MCS78, you don’t need to adjust Plate Temp settings as it automatically adjusts when Probe Tempt settings are manipulated.

Step Four | Add Distilled Water

Once you notice the solution/probe temperature reach 50°C, add 10 drops of distilled water per 20mls of oil mixture. Allow the solution to mix for 60 minutes.

Step Five | Decarboxylation Process

After one hour of processing, adjust the Probe Temp setting back to 125°C. As the solution temperature approaches 90°C, you’ll notice small air bubbles beginning to form. This is the physical manifestation of C02 being boiled off THC-A cannabinoids, which is a prime indication of decarboxylation.

Step Six | Resting the Solution

Once all bubbles stop forming, this is indicating the decarboxylation process has completed. At this time, set Probe Temp to 55°C and allow the solution to process for 48-hours. After two days, there will be only trace amounts of ethanol remaining. In our laboratory tests, the average remaining ethanol measures anywhere from 54-32 parts per million (ppm).

 

CAT Scientific | The Leader in Advanced Cannabis Processing Methodology

Whether you’re processing large batches of product or experimenting with new techniques, the CAT MCS78 Magnetic Hotplate Stirrer is capable of transforming complex tasks into efficiently streamlined duties. <a href=“http://www.catscientific.com/contact-us/”>Contact Us</a> if you have any questions about the operation of this, and other, products or if you simply want to discover more about what our solutions can offer you!

 

Safety Disclaimer | Assumption of Risk

While CAT Scientific actively seeks out the safest routes for cannabis processing, the CAT MCS78 isn’t without several inherent risks, especially when extractions contain ethanol. Some of these uncontrollable risks include, but are not limited to: minor/major bodily injury, loss of or damage to property, and death. By taking part in this advanced processing methodology, you accept and understand the risks of purging ethanol from cannabis solutions and willingly assert and agree operating the CAT MSC78 Magnetic Hotplate Stirrer for this use is voluntary and done so under the known assumption of its risks.





 

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Bob Wilcox

Bob Wilcox has represented CAT Scientific’s family of homogenizers, magnetic stirrers, liquid handling and related laboratory equipment since 2002 when Staufen, Germany-based CAT Ingenieurbüro M. Zipperer GMbH established operations in North America. Bob oversees CAT Scientific laboratory apparatus sales and service organization from the company’s headquarters in Paso Robles, CA. He also is in charge of the parent company’s line of JetCat jet turbines, turboprop, and helicopter power plants for hobbyists’ radio controlled fixed wing and helicopter model aircraft.

Earlier in Bob’s career he was involved in visual and special effects as well as camera and electronics supervisory responsibilities for the motion picture and television industry.

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