Hielscher Ultrasound Technology

Ultrasonic Elderberry Extraction

Elderberry extracts are well-known for their antiviral properties and thereby heavily used as natural remedy to relieve flu symptoms such as fever, cough, and sore throat. To produce elderberry extracts with a high polyphenol and antioxidant content, a mild yet efficient extraction method is required. Ultrasonic extraction as a non-thermal, mild technique is used widely in the production of high-quality botanical extracts. Sonication increases extraction rate, yield and quality of elderberry extracts.

Elderberry Extract

Polyphenols, flavonoids and vitamins are efficiently extracted from elderberry fruits and flowers by ultrasonicationElderberries are the fruit of the Black Elder (Sambucus nigra L.) tree. Elderberry fruits and flowers are well-known for their richness in flavonoids and vitamins. The berries contain high amounts of certain anthocyanins, and both berries and flowers contain high amounts of certain flavonols. Flavonoids such as anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins, flavonols, flavanones, and flavones are polyphenolic antioxidants, which support the immune system and show various benefits on overall health. Additionally, elderberry has antiviral, anti-bacterial and anti-cancer properties and has shown to improve cardiovascular health. Especially the flavonoids give elderberry products their exceptional antiviral properties.
To get the highest benefit from elderberry’s health-promoting properties, the bioactive compounds such as polyphenols, flavonoids, anthocyanins, and vitamins are extracted from elderberry fruits and flowers and formulated into a concentrated, highly potent health product.
Commercial elderberry preparations for the treatment of the common cold and flu are available in various forms, including liquids, syrups, capsules, tablets, lozenges and gummies.

Ultrasonic Extraction – A Turbo Extraction Technique

To produce large amounts of high-quality elderberry extract, an efficient, yet mild extraction technique is required. The mildness of the extraction process is important to avoid the degradation of the bioactive compounds. For instance, many phytonutrients are thermo-labil, which means they are decomposed by heat. The ultrasonic extraction is a non-thermal technique, whose mechanism is purely mechanical. Ultrasonic extraction is based on the generation of acoustic cavitation, which produces shear forces and turbulences in the extraction liquid. These cavitational shear forces disrupt the cell matrix of plant and releases the bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols, anthocyanins, flavonoids and vitamins, into the surrounding extraction liquid / solvent. Due to the effectiveness of ultrasonic cavitation, ultrasonic extraction can release the complete amount of bioactive phyto-nutrients from the botanical raw material. Ultrasonic extraction gives exceptionally high yields in a very short processing time.

Ultrasonic extractor UP400St + sonotrode S24d22L2D with 8L extraction batch for botanical extraction

The UP400St is a 400 watts powerful ultrasonic extractor to release and isolate phyto-nutrients from botanicals

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In this video, ultrasonic extraction from hops (humulus lupulus) is demonstrated. With the ultrasonicator UP200Ht caryophyllene and other compounds are extracted.

Ultrasonic Extraction of Hops with UP200Ht with S2614 probe

Another benefit is the compatibility of ultrasonics with any kind of solvents. Whilst conventional extraction techniques such as soaking, maceration or Soxhlet extraction often require harsh and toxic solvents, ultrasonic extraction allows you to select the solvent of your choice. Ultrasonic extraction can be performed using water, water/alcohol mixtures, ethanol, vegetable oils and other mild solvents. Especially (aqueous) ethanol has been established as a potent and reliable solvent, which can be easily evaporated after extraction and residual trace amounts in the extract would be non-toxic.
Ultrasonication is a well-established method to produce high-quality extracts from botanicals, e.g., elderberry fruits and flowers. High-performance ultrasonics is a process intensifying technique: It makes the extraction more efficient by giving higher yields and accelerates the process. Therefore, sonication is also known as a turbo extraction technique.

Advantages of Ultrasonic Elderberry Extraction

  • Higher yields
  • Rapid extraction
  • High-quality extract
  • Non-thermal treatment
  • Free choice of solvent
  • Easy and safe to operate

Turbo Extraction of Botanical Compounds with Ultrasonics

As a turbo extraction process, ultrasonication extracts significantly more intensiv than other conventional extraction methods (e.g. cold soaking, infusion, maceration, percolation etc.). This is due to the ultrasonically induced mixing, size reduction of particles, and the thereby enhanced mass transfer. With an increased mass transfer, the concentration equilibrium between botanical material (biomass) and the surrounding solvent is significantly faster achieved. As soon as this concentration equilibrium has been reached, the extraction step is completed since the solvent cannot absorb more bioactive molecules. The ultrasonic mixing, dispersing and reducing of botanical solids flushes the targeted molecules from the cellular matrix of the plant out into the solvent. Whilst other extraction methods require often several hours or days, the ultrasonic extraction is achieved within a few minutes. The short, non-thermal ultrasonic treatment prevents the active molecules against temperature-induced degradation.

High-Performance Ultrasonic Extractors for Elderberry Extraction

All extraction results achieved on small scale, can be linearly scaled to larger production capacities. Hielscher Ultrasonics large product portfolio from lab to industrial extraction systems has the most suitable ultrasonicator for your envisaged process capacity. Our long-time experienced staff will assist you from feasibility tests and process optimisation to the installation of your ultrasonic system on final production level.

Hielscher Ultrasonics – Sophisticated Extraction Equipment

Hielscher Ultrasonics product portfolio covers the full range of high-performance ultrasonic extractors from small to large scale. Additional accessories allow for the easy assembly of the most suitable ultrasonic device configuration for your process. The optimal ultrasonic setup depends on the envisaged capacity, volume, raw material, batch or inline process and timeline.

Batch and Inline

Hielscher ultrasonicators can be used for batch and continuous flow-through processing. Depending on your process volume and hourly throughput, inline processing might be recommended. Whilst batching is more time- and labour-intensive, a continuous inline mixing process is more efficient, faster and requires significantly less labour. Hielscher Ultrasonics has the most suitable extraction setup for your extraction volume and process goals.

Ultrasonic Extractors for Every Product Capacity

UIP4000hdT flow cell for inline sonication on industrial scaleHielscher Ultrasonics product range covers the full spectrum of ultrasonic processors from compact lab ultrasonicators over bench-top and pilot systems to fully-industrial ultrasonic processors with the capacity to process truckloads per hour. The full product range allows us to offer you the most suitable ultrasonic extractor for your raw material, process capacity and production targets.
Ultrasonic benchtop systems are ideal for feasibility tests and process optimization. Linear scale-up based on established process parameters makes it very easy to increase the processing capacities from smaller lots to fully commercial production. Up-scaling can be done by either installing a more powerful ultrasonic extractor unit or clustering several ultrasonicators in parallel. With the UIP16000, Hielscher offers the most powerful ultrasonic extractor worldwide.

Precisely Controllable Amplitudes for Optimum Results

All Hielscher ultrasonicators are precisely controllable and thereby reliable work horses in production. The amplitude is one of the crucial process parameters that influence the efficiency and effectiveness of ultrasonic extraction of bioactive photo-nutrients from botanicals.
Hielscher's industrial processors of the hdT series can be comfortable and user-friendly operated via browser remote control.Raw material such as soft berries require milder sonication and lower amplitude settings, whilst thick leaves or seeds with a robust and hard shell require sonication at higher amplitudes to release the intracellular compounds. All Hielscher Ultrasonics’ processors allow for the precise setting of the amplitude. Sonotrodes and booster horns are accessories that allow to modify the amplitude in an even wider range. Hielscher’s industrial ultrasonic processors can deliver very high amplitudes and deliver the required ultrasonic intensity for demanding applications. Amplitudes of up to 200µm can be easily continuously run in 24/7 operation.
Precise amplitude settings and the permanent monitoring of the ultrasonic process parameters via smart software give you the possibility to treat your seeds with the most effective ultrasonic conditions. Optimal sonication for best extraction results!
The robustness of Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment allows for 24/7 operation at heavy duty and in demanding environments. This makes Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment a reliable work tool that fulfils your extraction requirements.

Easy, Risk-free Testing

Ultrasonic processes can be completely linear scaled. This means every result that you have achieved using a lab or bench-top ultrasonicator, can be scaled to exactly the same output using the exactly same process parameters. This makes ultrasonication ideal for risk-free feasibility testing, process optimization and subsequent implementation into commercial manufacturing. Contact us to learn how sonication can increase your sprout yield and quality.

Highest Quality – Designed and Manufactured in Germany

As a family-owned and family-run business, Hielscher prioritizes highest quality standards for its ultrasonic processors. All ultrasonicators are designed, manufactured and thoroughly tested in our headquarter in Teltow near Berlin, Germany. Robustness and reliability of Hielscher’s ultrasonic equipment make it a work horse in your production. 24/7 operation under full load and in demanding environments is a natural characteristic of Hielscher’s high-performance mixers.

The table below gives you an indication of the approximate processing capacity of our ultrasonicators:

Batch Volume Flow Rate Recommended Devices
1 to 500mL 10 to 200mL/min UP100H
10 to 2000mL 20 to 400mL/min UP200Ht, UP400St
0.1 to 20L 0.2 to 4L/min UIP2000hdT
10 to 100L 2 to 10L/min UIP4000hdT
n.a. 10 to 100L/min UIP16000
n.a. larger cluster of UIP16000

You can buy Hielscher ultrasonic processor in any different size and exactly configured to your process requirements. From treating seeds in a small lab beaker to the continuous flow-through mixing of seed slurries on industrial level, Hielscher Ultrasonics offers a suitable ultrasonicator for you! Please contact us – we are glad to recommend you the ideal ultrasonic setup!

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Hielscher Ultrasonics manufactures high-performance ultrasonic homogenizers for dispersion, emulsification and cell extraction.

High-power ultrasonic homogenizers from lab to pilot and industrial scale.

Literature / References



Facts Worth Knowing

Elderberry-containing Pharmaceuticals and Supplements

Black elder and elderberry extracts are formulated either into single extracts or black elder-containing multi-herb products. Pure elderberry extracts are products such as Sambucol® (Sambucol, Pharmacare US Inc., San Diego), Rubini® (Rubini, Iprona AG Via Industria LANA, Italy) and other S. nigra extracts or syrups , and black elder-containing multi-herb products such as Sinupret® (Sinupret, Bioforce USA). Elderberry extracts and elderberry containing products are especially administered to strengthen the immune system and to treat symptoms of the common cold and influenza.