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Manuals and assembly guides
Frequently asked questions
Will my reaction be quicker with a SpinChem® RBR?
Yes, most likely. All heterogeneous reactions that are mass transfer limited will be faster. This is due to the more efficient convective transport of reaction solution to and from the solid phase packed into SpinChem® RBR. Depending on the reaction, this may result in a shorter process time, higher yield or decreased reagent consumption.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR instead of a fixed bed reactor for my process?
Certainly. It has been shown that using a SpinChem® RBR can enable both a faster process and reduced solid phase consumption, while at the same time avoiding the back pressures associated with columns.
Can I perform multistep reactions or one-pot synthesis with a SpinChem® RBR?
Yes, you can perform multistep reactions in sequence or in parallel. The SpinChem® RBR is equipped with several compartments which could hold different solid phases at the same time. Imagine using a catalyst and a scavenger simultaneously in a combined one-pot synthesis and cleaning process.
Is it easy to integrate a SpinChem® RBR into my existing equipment?
Yes, it is very easy. Just replace your traditional stirrer with a SpinChem® RBR and you are done.
How often do I need to replace the filters in my SpinChem® RBR?
Frequently. Since this is the only barrier keeping your particles within the RBR, the filters should be replaced at any sign of wear or poor sealing against the edges.
How can I process large volumes with the SpinChem® RBR?
In several ways. You can use a larger RBR, connect a smaller RBR to an already existing tank, or run repeated cycles with an automated semi-continuous setup. The best choice depends on your process and previously installed equipment. Please contact SpinChem to discuss your particular scale-up requirements.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR with probes for online monitoring?
Yes, certainly. Readings from probes in the reaction vessel for measuring parameters such as UV, NIR and pH often experience less disturbance since the solid phase particles are contained within the SpinChem® RBR instead of swirling past the probes.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR with any type of reaction vessel?
Yes, but performance will be significantly improved using baffled reaction vessels. Maximum mass transfer and minimum vortex formation will be achieved when the SpinChem® RBR is used in the SpinChem® flower-baffled reaction vessels.
Is it easy to recycle my expensive catalyst with a SpinChem® RBR?
Yes, very easy. Recycling is accomplished by removing the SpinChem® RBR from the reaction vessel and washing it by rotating it in a suitable solvent. The lack of filtration steps will minimize mechanical wear on and loss of particles, while maintaining activity for a longer time, especially for more fragile materials.
Is it easy to clean my reaction vessel post synthesis with a SpinChem® RBR?
Yes. Since there is no solid phase in solution no particles will stick to vessel walls or in drain valves. This can extend the lifetime of your reaction vessel equipment and avoid problems with leaking of particles.
Do I need to filter my reaction solution after using a SpinChem® RBR?
No, not likely. Since the solid phase is contained within the SpinChem® RBR there will be no grinding of the solid phase, and thus neither particles nor fines to remove afterwards.
Is a SpinChem® RBR suitable if my solvents are immiscible?
Yes. Thanks to the very efficient mixing and mass transfer with SpinChem® RBR, it is possible to use reaction solutions containing different reagents in immiscible solvents.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR for reactions that require oxygen supply?
Yes, the SpinChem® RBR is very efficient in transporting also dissolved gasses to the solid phase. The SpinChem® RBR typically provides an oxygen supply that is vastly superior to packed bed reactors (PBR), and better or comparable to stirred tank reactors (STR).
Can a SpinChem® RBR handle solvents with high viscosity?
Yes. The enhanced mass transfer with SpinChem® RBR, compared to traditional stirred tank reactors (STR), is especially noticeable with viscous liquids, where diffusion is further limited. Optimal performance of the SpinChem® RBR in viscous liquids might require operation at a higher rotational speed.
Will my reaction be affected by switching to a larger particle size that is suitable for the SpinChem® RBR?
Possibly. If you are using a porous material, the total surface area of your solid phase might not be affected by a change in particle size. What will change is the diffusion distances, which with a larger particle size, will become larger. Due to the very efficient mass transfer achieved with the SpinChem® RBR, this will, however, likely not affect the reaction rate.
What type of solid phase can I use with a SpinChem® RBR?
Any type. As long as the particles are of a sufficient size to be retained by the filter, the SpinChem® RBR is suitable for any type of solid phase. This includes everything from hard ceramic and glass, to soft materials like polymer beads and alginate particles. This encompasses a range of functionalities, including ion exchangers, activated carbon, metal scavengers, plain and modified silica, immobilized enzymes, and encapsulated cells.
My solid phase is soft and fragile. Is a SpinChem® RBR suitable anyway?
Yes, indeed. The protected compartment within the SpinChem® RBR is particularly beneficial for soft or fragile particles, including beads of alginate, gelatin, superporous agarose and polyvinyl alcohol, to name a few.
I know the particle size of my resin in U.S. mesh. What is the equivalent size in microns?
Particle size in micrometres (μm) refers to the average diameter of the resin particles. The size distribution around this value depends on the resin in question. U.S. mesh is a measurement of the number of openings that fit per inch of the screen used to separate particles of different sizes. As an example, for a U.S. mesh 3 there are three openings per inch of the screen (each 6730 μm wide), meaning that it will let through particles of a size much larger than e.g. a 100-mesh screen (which has a hundred openings per inch, each 149 μm wide).
The open mesh filter of the RBR is 104 μm, corresponding to 140 openings per square inch of the filter. The size distribution of the particles used in the RBR should thus not fall below 104 μm, or 140 U.S. mesh.
Do I need to keep the SpinChem® RBR fully packed?
No. As opposed to fixed bed reactors, the performance of a SpinChem® RBR is very robust and will not be significantly affected by channelling due to a loosely packed bed.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR with whole cells?
Yes, but only if you encapsulate the cells. The size of cells is typically too small for the SpinChem® RBR filter (104 µm). By encapsulating the cells within particles such as alginate, the particles will be of a sufficient size for the SpinChem® RBR.
Can I use a SpinChem® RBR if my particle size is 110 µm?
Maybe. The open mesh of the filter in the SpinChem® RBR is 104 µm. If your solid material has a very broad particle size distribution, a considerable fraction of the material will be particles smaller than the nominal size, which will therefore pass through the filter.
Can I pack any size of powder into a SpinChem® RBR?
No. The particle size needs to be larger than the 104 µm open mesh of the filter, or else the particles will escape from the packed bed. If your solid phase visually appears as a homogeneous powder rather than individual particles, the particle size is likely smaller than 50 µm.
What rotational speed should I use with a SpinChem® RBR?
This depends on your SpinChem® RBR, reaction vessel, reaction type and solid phase. The optimal rotational speed is, however, often in the range of 300-600 rpm.
What is the power consumption of a SpinChem® RBR?
Low. Compared to traditional impellers, the power consumption is similar or lower.
What is the flow rate through a SpinChem® RBR?
Sufficient. Since the reaction liquid passes the solid phase many times, unlike in a packed bed reactor, the flow rate is of less importance to the implementation. It is also very challenging to measure this flow rate accurately.
At what temperatures can I use my SpinChem® RBR?
In a wide range. The SpinChem® RBR can be used in temperatures from below room temperature, up to several hundred degrees Celsius, provided that your reaction solution still is in liquid form.
Is there a limit to scaling up the SpinChem® RBR technology?
No, the SpinChem® RBR technology is scalable up to any reactor volume. If the existing set-up makes it impractical to use the RBR in-tank for batch processing, SpinChem offers other solutions, such as flow systems, where the RBR is used in a separate vessel connected to the main tank. This way, it is possible to process extremely large liquid volumes in relation to the size of the RBR.
Can the SpinChem® RBR be used in continuous process and flow chemistry?
Yes, the SpinChem® RBR can be used in connected systems of reactor vessels, where the RBR is used in one or more of these vessels. In fact, the RBR drives the flow so efficiently on its own that no pumps are needed.
Can the SpinChem® MagRBR be used multiple times?
As the solid resin is contained within the MagRBR, it is protected from mechanical wear, which significantly increases the lifetime of the immobilized enzymes. This together with the fact that the resin is easily washed and stored, with no risk of material loss, means that MagRBR can be reused for the conversion of multiple batches. However, as the MagRBR is designed as a disposable item, delivered pre-packed with resin, is not possible to replace the solid phase material once it is spent.
Can I use the SpinChem® MagRBR in any vessel?
Yes. Although the reaction tube included with the SpinChem® MagRBR is recommended, you can use any vessel of your choice. However, it cannot be guaranteed that the rotational course of the MagRBR will be kept stable in all types of vessels, as it is dependent on the size, material and bottom surface curvature of the vessel used.
Can I use my existing magnetic stirrer for the SpinChem® MagRBR?
Yes, any magnetic stirrer can be used to drive the rotational movement of the SpinChem® MagRBR, provided that the magnetic coupling is of sufficient strength and stability.