Delta 8 - Remediation of Unknowns

Hi All,

We are now well aware that conventionally manufactured delta 8 thc is likely contaminated with a slew of nasty components. So far, the information provided has suggested the potential presence of:


And many, many more are likely.

This SHOULD NOT come as a surprise to d8 manufacturers. Chemical synthesis is a process that never proceeds with 100% efficiency and side reactions are always a concern during method development.

That being said, the general consensus seems to be that a d8-distillate product must undergo chromatographic purification to meet acceptable standards (standard in this case meaning, at a minimum, wholly safe for consumption).

That being said, I’d like to ask the community what they’re exploring in terms of purification options and what theoretical basis such decisions are made upon.

This is an uphill battle, but is also the right direction for the industry to move in. The days of passing shitty product on and assuming it’ll all be okay are over.

Hope this thread serves to improve and expand the knowledge of us all.



All hail PHIL!

So as previously mentioned florasil & petroleum ether at 32L/100g of oil in the mentioned process for those needing cleanup.


32L Pet / 100g Distillate you say?


This one I think seems to be a function of running to process in a halogenated solvent, and improperly at that (likely DCM).

I’m so excited to try to distill all the really good process info that’s come out in the last week with this topic. The TLDR is: be far more concerned about peaks not within the standard cannabinoid range, and plan on distilling and running column on everything post reaction.

Thank you Phil for starting this thread


So, I’ve been worried about benzene as a byproduct of crude conversion(the gross nondistilled varieties). Seeing as it’s a breakdown product via pyrolysis already, is it possible that it’s created in the isomerization process via terpene degradation/reaction?


As the commandments were laid upon us, yes I preach sir


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Its quite volatile, I’d think with a product distilled post-reaction it’s less of a concern. I would be more concerned about aromatic byproducts formed from the benzene during the reaction

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Speaking of distillation,

I worry that some of these components, even with vastly different boiling points will codistill.

Benzene not so much. I agreed with @pdxcanna, benzene seems like a totally reasonable assumption considering the existence of benzene moieties in cannabinoid molecules.

I like to picture the acid catalyst as basically ripping molecules to shreds on accident. It’s like if it perfectly collided with the molecule it converts as you wish, a few angstroms off or at the wrong angle you blast the molecule into oblivion And the fragments are your contaminants

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I’ll go back through our notes to see what yielded the most with the least byproducts.

Olivetol is removed soooo easily.


This is the baffling part—it’s scalable, it costs ~$1/gram, and it’s easy.

Who can provide a single reason why we shouldn’t do this every single time.


I shouldn’t be saying this but… in the interest of advancing this…

People often look to the wrong places to solving a problem. Distillation and Chromatography. You can get rid of it without either.

You have a Lewis acid and CBD in a reactor. You know CBD breaks down to p-Cymene and Olivetol right?

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You mean other than literacy and a general respect for human life?

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Chromatography is the expensive part. That’s the $1/gram.

Olivetol is your friend if you look at it right.


D9 synth… like marinol :nail_care:t5:

Well from a chemical engineering perspective the real missing key is determining the kinetics of the reaction, maintaining the temperature of the reaction at the lowest economical number and quenching the reaction as soon as the tangent of the reactant generation = 0

But far be it from me to convince people to buy 1L reactors and characterize reactions adequately.

Edit: per @iontrap ”Olivetol is your friend if you look at it right” I.e. determine the moment at which Olivetol appears and then quench that reaction real quick like

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CBD + Lewis Acid → D8 + D9 + Olivetol + p-Cymene


Olivetol + terpene to make CBD or D8 → CBD (or D8)

Add terpene until Olivetol is consumed and no CBD left.

We did this in the 70s. Why get rid of something of value?

We were shocked no one is doing this.


:kissing: time to bust out the handy dandy resources.

Sorry I use a lot of idioms after my nightly smoke.

Edit: Pulegone.


We learned Olivetol was a huge irritant to the lungs and caused other problems.

When you have a Lewis acid and Olivetol, just make something useful.

In the end you will have:

p-Cymene, terpene, D8 and D9 + some byproducts easily removed through chromatography.

Then… we felt D8 was junk. It is. So we would convert to HCL and then to D9. 99% D9.


Or react olivetol with something that makes such a large molecule it’s left back in the reactor, or salt that compound out, or …

It’s up to you.


I’m not on the same page, I feel d8 (especially when used in combination with d9) is of some value.

Nothing like THCP, but still.