US10189762B1 – January 29, 2019 – Process for purification and separation of cannabinoids, from dried hemp and cannabis leaves

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Inventors :

Anil Rajaram Oroskar; David W. House; Praneeth Dayanthe Edirisinghe; Asha Anil Oroskar; Faridedin Adel; Xinjie Chen; Gautham Anil Oroskar

Owner :

OROCHEM TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ILLINOIS

Application Number :

US15644112

Document Number :

US10189762B1

Priority Date :

July 7, 2017

Filing Date :

July 7, 2017

Date of Grant/ Publication :

January 29, 2019

Class :

C07C37 / 82; C07C37 / 84; B01D15 / 00; C07C37 / 68; B01D15 / 18

Abstract

Disclosed is a method for purification and separation of cannabinoids, specifically cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol, from the dried hemp and cannabis leaves using a combination of a sequence of purification steps including: filtration, decolorization, activation or decarboxylation, dewaxing, a continuous simulated moving bed process, polishing, and crystallization to separate cannabinoids from tetrahydrocannabinol and to provide phytocannabinoid rich oil and cannabidiol isolate. The cannabinoid products can be used in various pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications.

Claim(s)

1. A process for the purification of cannabidiol (CBD) in a crude cannabis extract stream to provide at least one high purity cannabidiol product selected from the group consisting of a high purity cannabinoid oil stream, a phytocannabinoid rich oil, a solid CBD aggregate and mixtures thereof being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol, said process comprising: a) passing the crude cannabis extract stream comprising debris and small particles, cannabidiol, tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiolic acid, tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, other cannabinols, chlorophylls, color bodies, sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities, and ethanol to a first filtration zone comprising a series of successive filters of decreasing pore size, starting at a pore size of 100 microns and reducing to about 10 microns in 3 or more stages to remove debris and small particles in a progressive filtration step to provide a filtered crude cannabinoid stream; b) passing the filtered crude cannabinoid stream comprising cannabidiol, tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiolic acid, tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, other cannabinols, chlorophylls, color bodies, sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities, and ethanol to a decolorization zone comprising a 10 ?m filter and a decolorization chromatographic column containing a modified activated carbon adsorbent which was heat treated to provide a highly hydrophobic adsorbent which is essentially free of hydroxyl groups, has an average particle diameter of between 177 and 250 microns, and an iodine number of above 900 mg/g and operated at a decolorization pressure of 2.72 atm to about 4.08 atm (40-60 psig) and a decolorization temperature ranging from 20-25° C. to remove at least a portion of color bodies and essentially all of the chlorophyll to provide a decolorized extract stream; c) passing the decolorized extract stream to a first evaporation zone operated at a first vacuum pressure of ?0.60 to about ?0.74 atm (?18 to ?22 in Hg) and a temperature of about 90 to about 110° C. to remove at least a portion of the ethanol to provide an evaporated extract stream which is essentially free of ethanol; d) passing the evaporated extract stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities and other cannabinoids to an activation zone and therein subjected to a carboxylation reaction at a decarboxylation temperature of about 90 to about 120° C. and a decarboxylation pressure of about ?0.6 atm to 0.74 atm for a decarboxylation reaction time of about 5 to about 8 hours, or sufficient time for the decarboxylation reaction to occur and proceed to completion, said decarboxylation reaction time being sufficient to fully decarboxylate essentially all of the cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) to provide a decarboxylated cannabinoid oil comprising cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), lipids, plant waxes, and other cannabinoids, and being essentially free of cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), and water washing the decarboxylated cannabinoid oil to remove at least a portion of the impurities to provide a washed decarboxylated cannabinoid oil; e) admixing the washed decarboxylated cannabinoid oil with a dewaxing solvent having a dewaxing solvent volume ratio of 80 volume units of ethanol to 20 volume units water to provide a dewaxing feed stream and passing the dewaxing feed stream to a dewaxing zone containing a dewaxing column at a dewaxing column pressure of about 2.72 atm to about 4.08 atm (40-60 psi) and room temperature (20-25° C.), said dewaxing column containing a hydrophobic activated carbon adsorbent which is essentially free of hydroxyl groups, and having an average particle diameter of between 177 and 250 microns, and an iodine number of above 900 mg/g to remove at least a portion of the lipids and plant waxes and to provide a dewaxed cannabinoid oil stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), sugars and carbohydrates, color bodies, and other cannabinoids; f) passing the dewaxed cannabinoid oil stream and a mobile phase desorbent stream consisting of a mixture of food grade ethanol and water to a reversed phase simulated moving bed zone comprising a plurality of adsorbent beds containing a modified hydrophobic adsorbent comprising a styrene-divinylbenzene (DVB) resin having 4 to 8 percent crosslinking or a poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) resin, said modified hydrophobic adsorbent having an average particle diameter of between 25 and 300 microns, an average bulk density (gm/mL) of from 0.4 to 0.6, a surface area (m2/g) of from 450 to 550, and a pore volume of from 0.70-0.90 (mL/g) to provide a primary raffinate stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), mobile phase desorbent, sugars and carbohydrates, color bodies, and other cannabinoids and being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), an extract stream comprising mobile phase desorbent, cannabidiol (CBD), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and a secondary raffinate stream comprising mobile phase desorbent, cannabidiol (CBD) which is admixed with the mobile phase desorbent and returned to the reversed phase simulated moving bed zone; g) passing the primary raffinate to a second evaporation zone to remove mobile phase desorbent to provide a second recovered solvent stream comprising the mobile phase desorbent and to provide the high purity cannabinoid oil stream having an average cannabidiol purity of greater than 80 wt % and being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); h) passing at least a portion of the high purity cannabinoid oil stream to a polishing zone and therein admixing the high purity cannabinoid oil stream with a non-polar solvent stream comprising hexane and therein allowing the admixture to settle to form a precipitate comprising sugars and carbohydrates and a supernatant non-polar solution comprising cannabidiol (CBD), color bodies, and other cannabinoids; i) passing a portion of the supernatant non-polar solution to a second filtration zone to remove the precipitate and to provide a filtered supernatant non-polar solution; j) passing the filtered supernatant non-polar solution to a third evaporation zone to remove at least a portion of the non-polar solvent to provide an evaporated cannabinoid oil stream and a recovered non-polar solvent stream, and returning at least a portion of the recovered non-polar solvent stream to the polishing zone to be admixed with the non-polar solvent; k) passing the evaporated cannabinoid oil stream to a wash zone and alternately washing the evaporated cannabinoid oil stream first with an ethanol wash stream comprising pure ethanol in a washing ratio of 1:3 liters of ethanol to kilograms of evaporated cannabinoid oil, and second with a fourth water wash stream in a water wash ratio of 1:3 liters of water to kilograms of evaporated cannabinoid oil, and wherein following each step, washed cannabinoid oil is evaporated to dryness to provide a phytocannabinoid rich oil which is essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and comprising greater than 80 wt-% cannabinoid (CBD); l) passing a portion of the supernatant non-polar solution to a isolate chromatography zone comprising a first isolate chromatography column and a second isolate chromatography column being in serial fluid communication and wherein the first isolate chromatography column contains a modified hydrophilic adsorbent comprising a spherical polar silica adsorbent having a high level of silenol groups, an average particle diameter of between 60 and 200 microns, a surface area of between 450 to 550 m2/g a pore volume of between 0.7 and 0.85 mL/g and a pore size of between 0.005 and 0.0075 microns, wherein the second isolate chromatography column contains an activated alumina adsorbent having an average particle diameter of between 50 to 200 microns, an average bulk density of 0.85 g/ml, a surface area of between 140 and 170 m2/g, and an average pore diameter of greater than 0.006 microns to provide an isolate elute stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), non-polar solvent and other cannabinoids; m) passing the isolate elute stream to a crystallization zone, wherein the isolate elute stream is subjected to a freezer temperature of equal to or less than about ?20° C. for a freezer period of about 24 to about 72 hours to permit primary high purity cannabidiol crystals, containing from about 96 to about 98 wt-% cannabidiol to form, harvesting the primary high purity cannabidiol (CBD) crystals and admixing the primary high purity cannabidiol crystals with hexane to provide the crystal isolate solution comprising 20-30% by weight cannabidiol CBD oils, and retaining the crystal isolate solution at room temperature for a period of 24-72 hours to permit secondary high purity CBD crystals to form and harvesting the secondary high purity CBD crystals; n) passing the secondary high purity CBD crystals to a rotary evaporation zone wherein the secondary high purity crystals are heated until molten to evaporate any residual non-polar and washed with a third water wash stream at least three times in the rotary evaporation, wherein at the completion of each wash step the secondary high purity crystals are dried to complete dryness to provide a solid CBD aggregate which is essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and has a cannabidiol purity of greater than 99 wt-%; and, o) withdrawing at least one high purity cannabidiol product being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) a stream selected from the group consisting of the high purity cannabinoid oil stream, the phytocannabinoid rich oil, the solid CBD aggregate and mixtures thereof.;
claim 2: 7. A process for the purification of cannabidiol (CBD) in a crude cannabis extract stream to provide at least one high purity cannabidiol product being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol, said process comprising: a) passing the crude cannabis extract stream comprising debris and small particles, cannabidiol, tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiolic acid, tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, other cannabinols, chlorophylls, color bodies, sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities, and ethanol to a first filtration zone comprising a series of successive filters of decreasing pore size, starting at a pore size of 100 microns and reducing to about 10 microns in 3 or more stages to remove debris and small particles in a progressive filtration step to provide a filtered crude cannabinoid stream; b) passing the filtered crude cannabinoid stream comprising cannabidiol, tetrahydrocannabinol, cannabidiolic acid, tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, other cannabinols, chlorophylls, color bodies, sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities, and ethanol to a decolorization zone comprising a 10 ?m filter and a decolorization chromatographic column containing a modified activated carbon adsorbent which was heat treated to provide a highly hydrophobic adsorbent which is essentially free of hydroxyl groups, has an average particle diameter of between 177 and 250 microns, and an iodine number of above 900 mg/g and operated at a decolorization pressure of 2.72 atm to about 4.08 atm (40-60 psig) and a decolorization temperature ranging from 20-25° C. to remove at least a portion of color bodies and essentially all of the chlorophyll to provide a decolorized extract stream; c) passing the decolorized extract stream to a first evaporation zone operated at a first vacuum pressure of ?0.60 to about ?0.74 atm (?18 to ?22 in Hg) and a temperature of about 90 to about 110° C. to remove at least a portion of the ethanol to provide an evaporated extract stream which is essentially free of ethanol; d) passing the evaporated extract stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), sugars and carbohydrates, lipids, plant waxes, impurities and other cannabinoids to an activation zone and therein subjected to a carboxylation reaction at a decarboxylation temperature of about 90 to about 120° C. and a decarboxylation pressure of about ?0.6 atm to 0.74 atm for a decarboxylation reaction time of about 5 to about 8 hours, or sufficient time for the decarboxylation reaction to occur and proceed to completion, said decarboxylation reaction time being sufficient to fully decarboxylate essentially all of the cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) to provide a decarboxylated cannabinoid oil comprising cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), lipids, plant waxes, and other cannabinoids, and being essentially free of cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), and water washing the decarboxylated cannabinoid oil to remove at least a portion of the impurities to provide a washed decarboxylated cannabinoid oil; e) admixing the washed decarboxylated cannabinoid oil with a dewaxing solvent having a dewaxing solvent volume ratio of 80 volume units of ethanol to 20 volume units water to provide a dewaxing feed stream and passing the dewaxing feed stream to a dewaxing zone containing a dewaxing column at a dewaxing column pressure of about 2.72 atm to about 4.08 atm (40-60 psi) and room temperature (20-25° C.), said dewaxing column containing a hydrophobic activated carbon adsorbent which is essentially free of hydroxyl groups, and having an average particle diameter of between 177 and 250 microns, and an iodine number of above 900 mg/g to remove at least a portion of the lipids and plant waxes and to provide a dewaxed cannabinoid oil stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), sugars and carbohydrates, color bodies, and other cannabinoids; f) passing the dewaxed cannabinoid oil stream and a mobile phase desorbent stream consisting of a mixture of food grade ethanol and water to a reversed phase simulated moving bed zone comprising a plurality of adsorbent beds containing a modified hydrophobic adsorbent comprising a styrene-divinylbenzene (DVB) resin having 4 to 8 percent crosslinking or a poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) resin, said modified hydrophobic adsorbent having an average particle diameter of between 25 and 300 microns, an average bulk density (gm/mL) of from 0.4 to 0.6, a surface area (m2/g) of from 450 to 550, and a pore volume of from 0.70-0.90 (mL/g) to provide a primary raffinate stream comprising cannabidiol (CBD), mobile phase desorbent, sugars and carbohydrates, color bodies, and other cannabinoids and being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), an extract stream comprising mobile phase desorbent, cannabidiol (CBD), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and a secondary raffinate stream comprising mobile phase desorbent, cannabidiol (CBD) which is admixed with the mobile phase desorbent and returned to the reversed phase simulated moving bed zone; g) passing the primary raffinate to a second evaporation zone to remove mobile phase desorbent to provide a second recovered solvent stream comprising the mobile phase desorbent and to provide a high purity cannabinoid oil stream having an average cannabidiol purity of greater than 80 wt % and being essentially free of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); and, h) withdrawing the high purity cannabinoid oil stream as the at least one high purity cannabidiol product having an average cannabidiol purity of greater than 80 wt %.

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