Buying a sonicator: Hielscher vs. Industrial Sonomechanics


Hey everyone,

I’m working with a company on a water soluble project right now and we are going to go the nanoemulsion route via sonication. The main motivations for going nano are the reduced surfactant content (and thus minimal effect on taste), continuous operation ability, long emulsion stability, and price point. ISM and Hielscher appear to be the two biggest brands in this space that I have come across.

I have received quotes from both brands and spoken with their applications people, and both seem like good brands with comparable pricing and features. What I am curious about is how people’s experiences have been with these companies after you’ve bought the product and how the performance is.

  1. Are you achieving the throughout they advertise?

  2. how reliable have the instruments been and what challenges have you experienced?

  3. In general, what are these companies’ reputations like? Hielscher seems to be the more established brand and really likes to advertise the “German engineering” thing.

  4. Does anyone have input on ISM’s nanostabilizer product? Seems like a good starting point for a quick go to market product.

Thanks in advance for your input!


Update to this post: I ended up going with Hielscher.


how is it working out?


It’s ok… definitely having some issues with formulation. I produce a lot of macroemulsions easily, but producing translucent emulsions is pretty challenging even with the sonicator.

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Extruders are so much easier to use.


Woah after a search I see that there has not been a single post on extruder liposomes… wild

Feast your eyes

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I’m working on putting together an extruder right now for large throughout liposome production- y’all really oughta get up to speed on the tech IMO it blows sonication out of the water


@Rowan have you actually tried using an extruder?

Also, I’m not trying to make liposomes at the moment, but micelles. In principle it should work the same way though…

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I’ve used extruders on a small scale, the syringes for prototyping- but will be getting the 800ml avestin unit this month- they work great.


Cool! I’ve seen the syringe method in action which is basically how a microfluidizer works as well. How much do those units cost?


The extruder is just an adapter on a high pressure homogenizer if I understand correctly. Which already works very well itself.


Does the extruder actually produce the most efficient nanoscale liposomes? My main concern is getting the onset time to within 10 minutes, and I don’t know if >100 nm would produce the fastest onset time. With extrusion I see that the particle size goes down to 103.3, but I’ve seen a couple research papers where the nanoscale particles are less than 50 nm. Just want to know your insight mainly since it looks like you have some experience with this area.


For my own ignorance and curiosity, what is the end result of these methods you are discussing? Is this for THC/CBD capsules, or is it an extract process/purification?