World Congress on Biosensors 2014

World Congress on Biosensors 2014
Biosensors 2014

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Safe Evaporation of Diethyl Ether Assists Lipid Extractions

The Inert Gas Purge (IGP) system, available for use with most Genevac evaporators, enables safe operation even when working with highly explosive solvents, those with a low flash point, very low auto-ignition temperature and a wide explosive vapour saturation range.

An application that has benefited particularly from the IGP system is lipid extraction from food and plant materials using the highly flammable solvent - diethyl ether. The aim of a typical diethyl ether extraction procedure is to separate cellular or fluid lipids from other constituents including proteins, polysaccharides, small molecules (API's, amino acids, sugars) and to preserve the lipids for further analyses.

To eliminate the risk of forming explosive diethyl ether / air mixtures, the IGP system purges the air from the evaporator using an inert gas prior to commencing the evaporation process.  The IGP system controls gases entering the evaporator, therefore at the end of the evaporation process, instead of releasing the vacuum by letting air into the chamber, inert gas is introduced instead. The inert gas atmosphere is then maintained until the user opens the system to retrieve their samples. Therefore not only can diethyl ether be safely removed using the Genevac evaporator / IGP system but the inert atmosphere also protects lipids from oxidative degradation.

The IGP system offers significant safety benefits for users wishing to evaporate highly explosive solvents including Carbon disulfide, Diethyl ether, 1,2-dimethoxyethane, 2-ethoxyethanol, Hydrogen cyanide, Pentane and Triethylsilane.

For further information please contact Genevac on +44-1473-240000, email or download a technical leaflet describing the IGP system from

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