A rotary evaporator that also goes by the name of a rotovap is a type of device mainly used in different types of chemical laboratories that facilitate the gentle and efficient removal of one or more solvents from a sample through the process of evaporation.
The main aim of distillation involves separating a mixture into different components according to their volatilities, through the evaporation process, followed by condensation which involves converting a liquid into a gas and then back into a liquid.
The rotary evaporators are used for 2 primary purposes:
# 1 for concentrating the non-volatile components in mixtures. An example of this may include concentrating the freshest and purest flavors from blood orange when the water is removed.
#2 to gently extract volatile flavor and aroma molecules from a mixture at a low temperature. An example of this may include extracting desirable flavors from a fruit, herbs, or alcohol blend, without the need to heat the mixture.
The Working Principle And Simple Structure Of A Rotary Evaporator
The evaporation flask will either be a round-bottom or eggplant flask that comes with a standardized ground joint. It is connected to a vacuum-pump through a reflux-serpentine condenser. The condenser features a second opening that connects to a collection flask that has a grinding-mouth that receives the organic evaporated solvent.
There is also a 3-way piston that is located between the vacuum pump and condenser. Once the rotary evaporator communicates with the surrounding atmosphere, the collection flask, and evaporation flask is removed which allows for the transfer of the solvent. When the vacuum pump is connected to the rotary evaporator, the rotavap is in what is known as a lowered pressure state.
When a rotavap is in use, the vacuum-pump must be turned on to lower the pressure. From here the motor can be started which rotates the Evaporation Flask at a continuous speed. Once the experiment comes to an end, the rotavap must first be stopped followed by ventilating it, to stop the flask from falling off while it is rotating.
The rotaevaporador will be in a pressure state that is negative when the vacuum pump is connected. The evaporation flask heats up in the water bath while rotating the flask at a consistent temperature. This heats up the mixture in the flask and allows the solution to evaporate efficiently and diffuse under negative pressure.
The rotavap can reduce and seal pressure to as much as 400-600 mmHg. The solvents inside the evaporation flasks are heated inside a heating bath. The temperature can reach near to the solvents boiling point, while the speed of rotation causes the solvent to turn into a thin film that increases the evaporation area. The hot steam that is produced through these processes can be quickly liquified which speeds up the process of evaporation.
The rotary evaporator is regarded as the ideal instrument used for the process of recovery, drying, and concentration. This device is used across a number of industries for the separation and distillation of solvents.