EthoEx: Engineering Mass Ethanol Extraction – Extraction Magazine
“The only players that will be able to survive are the ones who can produce quality equipment and products,” said Bryan Hull, CEO and founding engineer of EthoEx. “California is different from the other states… it’s made for a high-throughput market.”The EthoEx Prime delivers closed-loop, full process ethanol extraction. The system is completely automated, balanced, and maintained for the target spec of 1,000 pounds per 8-hour shift. Components include ethanol storage, electrical and cryogenic chilling units, a batch reactor, filtration, and ethanol recovery. The Prime is a proof of concept for the EthoEx Industrial, which is capable of 20,000 pounds per 8-hour shift.
Several feats of innovative engineering push EthoEx to the cutting edge.
Ethanol extractors know that lowering the temperature of ethanol to around -40°C reduces contamination from chlorophyll, fats, and lipids. But this temperature left Hull unsatisfied. “Standard methodology for ethanol extract is room-based temperature down to -40°C where you can get reasonable quality crude oil,” said Hull. “Even at -40°C filtration, this crude extract requires high filtration and fractional distillation, making full spectrum elusive and difficult to obtain.”
“My sweet spot is anywhere from -60°C to -90°C depending on extraction time, which is very difficult to do,” Hull continued. “What’s really novel about this very low temperature range is that you can obtain full spectrum. All the unwanted constituents are completely left behind in the biomass.”