Thar Process: Large scale Super critical Fluid Chromatography to separate CBD

Anyone got any experience with these guys?

Seems like interesting tech, uses 10% ethanol as a co-solvent with the CO2 for HPLC.

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Effectively the same machine as Waters SFE. I’ve heard rumors from techs at Waters about them doing this, it definitely will work. Everyone knows CO2 isn’t a fast enough extraction solvent, so they’re repurposing the machines for chromatography.

Edit: They’re going to use way more than just ethanol for this process.

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Probably works well if you have the couple million to even see the machine lol

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My understanding is that Waters uses Thar’s design/system/patent/whatever under license from Thar.

We seriously considered a Thar system before settling on ethanol, and if/when we finally get around to installing a CO2 system for terp extraction it will likely be a Thar (or possibly an Azoth). They appear to have some of the best systems from a pure engineering perspective, though we haven’t had time to see one in person yet.

Ballpark pricing I got from them a long time ago (USD):
Dual 70L chamber system (~100 kg/8 hours) = ~$800k
Dual 120L chamber system (~150-200 kg/8 hours) = ~$1.1M
Dual 360L chamber system (~550 kg/8 hours) = ~$2.35M


Interesting I assume those quotes are for the CO2 Extractor not the Super Critical Chromatograph? Did you get any information on the Chromatograph pricing?

Correct, and no I did not. They basically said “lots.”

Not quite the same as a waters SFE and not repurposing. They have 2 discrete product lines and are still very active in the CO2 extraction space.

Thar sold off a portion of their business to Waters several years ago…this included the tech behind the small Water’s SCO2 extractors.

I’ve spent a significant amount of time with Thar systems and they’re fantastic. Most manufacturers have popped up to service the cannabis industry in the past 5 years. Thar is OG and has been working with SCO2 since the 80s.

Shoot me an IM if you want to chat more!

I meant repurposing the design, not the actual machines, sorry. From what I discussed with one of their reps they hardly sell any of their “smaller” models and are instead using that size/framework for the chroma. They’re full on maximizing scale now, some of the stuff I looked at looks like it would fill a grocery warehouse.

Pretty crazy, but, I’m putting my bets on the EPA enforcing some type of regulation that stops cannabis/hemp extraction with hydrocarbons (maybe ethanol too) in place of CO2. I’m still doing research on the exact impact of different alkanes on the environment.

As far as the Waters bit, that’s why I said “effectively.” It’s a re-engineered piggyback from their design for smaller scale extractions.

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Gotya! Yes their SCO2 extractors range from 2X20 to 2X1250L (yes…1250L)! I’m a big fan of Thar.

We have a 300L SFE CO2 from Thar here in Lesotho. Still figuring out the optimized process parameters. first runs (october 2018) showed to have alot of waxes… with new DOE looking to do subcritical runs to mitigate waxes.

Anyone interested in helping us with our next DOE runs in May?

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What were your potency results out of the extractor? I have ran Waters machines which I heard are very similar to Thar. How do you like the machine?

You may be running it too hot…Why do you want to run sub-critical?

Between 55 - 65 % CBD, 1 - 3 % THC.

The machine is a beast - buuuut, not at all happy with the lipid content. We got a huge extractor to mitigate our bottle kneck at crude, and after our first run looks like our new bottle kneck might be winterization.

Would like to run sub-critical on the biomass first run to get high potency, low yield but lipid-free extract and then run supercritical on same biomass after to get residual API’s then clean that up.

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Get a 24 inch bel art bench top buchner you’ll be fine. I winterize warm extracted hexane crude with one and it works well. If you want to spend a little more I’d get a sambo creek, you need an air compressor though.

Yes, we are looking at the sambo creek filtration systems. in an ideal situation, we would like to do sub-critical on CO2 and immediately put sub-critical CO2 crude into a wiped film if possible.

As far as I know you have to winterize or you’ll have cloudy disty, I don’t think there’s a way to skip winterization with CO2, that’s why people use cryo ethanol


I figured; however, before we started consulting to them they had installed the Thar Process CO2 300L and we considering ways to mitigate ethanol in our GMP facility and keep ethanol to R&D. cryo ethanol works really well for wax mitigation.

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You could look into centrifugal wax/lipid separation, not sure if you would still end up with cloudy distillate or not, but, if you’re avoiding ethanol I’d say that’s your best bet.


We experimented with centrifugal separation of waxes with raw CO2 oil before and it does a good job with the heavier waxes but not the lighter waxes. It’s a good 85-90% solution that saves a fair amount of time for that first pass of winterization.


I saw similar potency results out of a Waters machine at basic parameters. Your idea of running sub-critical first should pull out less waxes.