September 23, 2019, 05:57:10 AM
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Topic: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality  (Read 296 times)

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Offline boblalux

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Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« on: September 09, 2019, 08:07:16 AM »
Improving the Quality of Lavender Oil

As a hobby, I annually produce about a liter of lavender oil by the steam distillation of buds from Lavendula Angustifolia.  As the plants are Lavandin, and not the “true” Lavender, the resulting oil could be improved by the removal of excess undesirable components, such as camphor etc.
Question: If I re-distll say 100ml of the lavender oil, and discard the first (or last) milliliters, can I improve Quality?
« Last Edit: September 09, 2019, 09:50:31 AM by boblalux »

Offline rolnor

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2019, 06:28:34 AM »
Can you distill att reduced pressure and use a good quality coloumn? I think steam-distillation does not give a good separation of components with different boilingpoint.

Offline boblalux

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2019, 12:41:29 PM »
Unfortunately not:  For the distillation I used a 10L traditional Copper alembic, for the proposed redistillation I have purchased on Ebay the normal lab glassware, with a 500ml starting round-bottomed flask, Standard condenser.

Offline boblalux

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2019, 12:45:05 PM »
Forgot to mention:  for the redistillation I won#t be using steam, but straight carefull heating of the flask.
 Steam distillation I used for the Primary distillation, which passed over 99+% water and the <1% oil which formed a layer ABOVE the water.

Offline rolnor

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2019, 01:57:17 PM »
I guess the boilingpoint is rather high for your oil? A coloumn is not expensive, you can find that on ebay. This one will give you much better separation even if its very simple:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/300mm-24-40-Vigreux-Distilling-Column-Glass-Distillation-Tube-Chemistry-Labware/331028407221?epid=20009976166&hash=item4d12d4a3b5:g:o9cAAOSwa0VaEs07

You can get a significant vacuum with a aspirator, you dint need a expensive pump:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Stainless-Steel-Aspirator-Pump-Humboldt-Lab-Vacuum-Hydro-Aspirators-Filter-Pumps/231589093032?hash=item35ebc91ea8:g:Ga8AAOSwF~Jasabh

Offline hypervalent_iodine

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2019, 05:17:12 PM »
It will be very difficult for you to remove the components you don’t want without also removing other components, plant oils being complex mixtures containing a lot of compounds with similar chemical and physical properties. For example, the boiling point of camphor (209 oC) is very similar to a lot of the other major components you likely can have in there; I can’t see that distillation is viable. Columning would be better, but it’s quite an effort for something you’re producing on a litre scale. Normal lavender oil contains a decent amount of camphor - is it really a problem to keep it in there?

Offline boblalux

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2019, 05:54:27 AM »
Thanks both of you.    Just read that the MAIN components of many lavender oils are in the family of the terpenes,  LINALOOL,  LINALYL ACETATE, and EUCALYPTOL and the Ketone CAMPHOR.  As you imply there are probably many complex constant boiling mixtures.  Perhaps I should just try, as with the removal of methanol from fermented fruits,  by   …….
redistilling my pure 200ml lavender oil, and checking by nose (!)  the first 1-2ml which primarily distil over.??  f this is very "campherous", then Bob's your Uncle.
Thanks rolnor, I will check the Ebay links you mention.

Offline hypervalent_iodine

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2019, 07:53:54 AM »
Thanks both of you.    Just read that the MAIN components of many lavender oils are in the family of the terpenes,  LINALOOL,  LINALYL ACETATE, and EUCALYPTOL and the Ketone CAMPHOR.  As you imply there are probably many complex constant boiling mixtures.  Perhaps I should just try, as with the removal of methanol from fermented fruits,  by   …….
redistilling my pure 200ml lavender oil, and checking by nose (!)  the first 1-2ml which primarily distil over.??  f this is very "campherous", then Bob's your Uncle.
Thanks rolnor, I will check the Ebay links you mention.

The key difference is that methanol is relatively low boiling. Most of the terpenes in lavender oil have boiling points between 190-220 oC, and camphor as I mentioned has a bp of 209 oC. Distillation is not a good option for what you want. By all means try it, but I would be entirely unsurprised if it doesn’t work.

Offline boblalux

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2019, 09:48:11 AM »
Thanks, I´ll try when the fract. condenser  arrives.
Bob

Offline rolnor

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Re: Redistillation of Lavender Oil to Improve Quality
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2019, 05:10:06 PM »
Hypervalents input here is important, with this close boilingpoints it will be very difficult to separate by distillation, even with a good coloumn. Chromathography is really not an option on this scale, it will be very expensive. Is there no indistrial method published, maybe in some patent?

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