Optimization and scale-up of inulin extraction from Taraxacum kok-saghyz roots
The optimization and scale-up of inulin extraction from Taraxacum kok-saghyz Rodin was successfully performed. Evaluating solubility investigations, the extraction temperature was fixed at 85°C. The inulin stability regarding degradation or hydrolysis could be confirmed by extraction in the presence of model inulin. Confirming stability at the given conditions the isolation procedure was transferred from a 1 L- to a 1 m3-reactor. The Reynolds number was selected as the relevant dimensionless number that has to remain constant in both scales. The stirrer speed in the large scale was adjusted to 3.25 rpm regarding a 300 rpm stirrer speed in the 1 L-scale and relevant physical and process engineering parameters. Assumptions were confirmed by approximately homologous extraction kinetics in both scales. Since T. kok-saghyz is in the focus of research due to its rubber content side-product isolation from residual biomass it is of great economic interest. Inulin is one of these additional side-products that can be isolated in high quantity (~ 35% of dry mass) and with a high average degree of polymerization (15.5) in large scale with a purity of 77%.