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Frequently Asked Questions

• Tournaire > Products & Services > Equipment > Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why consult Tournaire Equipment?

    Because 180 years of history count for something ! Thanks to this experience, unceasingly consolidated, Tournaire Group’s Equipment Division has developed its expertise and a series of unique solutions for the processing of natural raw materials. Tournaire Equipment thus proposes, among other things, the fullest and most effective range of systems for the extraction and purification of natural ingredients for the flavoring, perfume, cosmetic and health markets.

  • What range of equipment/units does the Equipment Division offer?

    Tournaire Equipment proposes a complete range of turnkey or made-to-measure equipment items and units for solid/liquid extraction, distillation, evaporation, rectification, filtration and sub-critical water extraction.

    Tournaire Equipment offers support to clients both for pilot equipment projects and for production units. Typically the pilot units proposed make it possible to process between a few hundred grams and several kilograms of raw materials, while the industrial-scale equipment is designed for daily production rates of several tons.

  • Besides the equipment, what other services does the Equipment Division offer?

    To support its clients, the Equipment Division goes far beyond the simple provision of equipment items or production units.

    In terms of engineering the Equipment Division provides assistance in the pre-design phase for dimensional calculations of industrial buildings, energy, transport, pre-processing and evacuation systems for raw materials, and for the design of support systems.

    For new equipment items, our staff can provide a complete service: logistics, handling, on-site installation, acceptance tests, commissioning and training, trouble-shooting and preventive maintenance.

    We can also intervene in the context of diagnosis, process optimization and revamping/conformity of installations.

  • What types of finishing are on offer?

    Depending on applications and user constraints, equipment items are available in several finishes. From the standard finish, by pickling and passivation, to mechanical and/or electrochemical polishing with prior grinding of weld beads. Surface roughness quality down to Ra 0.2 µm is thus possible for the most demanding applications, to facilitate cleaning. In these cases particular care is taken, right from the design phase, to limit retention zones.

  • How are units tested?

    At all stages of product development, detailed and documented control procedures are applied to validate both design and production. The aim is to ensure perfect conformity with user specifications and applicable regulations. According to requirements, verifications can also be carried out by a Notified Body.

    Additionally, in agreement with the final user, QI/QO/QP test protocols can be drawn up and implemented during works or site acceptance tests.

  • What materials are generally used ?

    For most applications AISI 304 or AISI 316L stainless steels are perfectly suitable. They are widely used in the manufacture of our units.

    For particularly corrosive applications, more heavily alloyed Chrome/Nickel steels can be used, such as Hastelloy® C22/C276, Uranus B6, etc.

  • Is it possible to perform tests on the Tournaire sites?

    Tournaire Group’s Equipment Division possesses a pilot laboratory in which certain tests can be carried out, either for the development of new processes or products, or to validate operational parameters. In particular we offer test facilities on our subcritical water extraction pilot plant. For more details on our test program,

  • Can units be automated?

    According the particular individual needs of each user, our equipment items and units can include different levels of automation. From a simple PID control loop for heating regulation up to complete supervision systems with automat, PC and touch-screen interface, we are in a position to offer the most appropriate solution for the intended use, even in ATEX zones.

  • Can equipment be adapted to specific needs?

    The mission of the Equipment Division is to offer its clients made-to-measure solutions that respond fully to their expectations in terms of quality and productivity. Since each client is unique, so too is each project for the Equipment Division.

  • What are main advantages of your extractors?

    For its most universal multifunction high-performance units, Tournaire Equipment proposes a stirred extractor with filtrating bottom, commonly known as EF2. This extractor has a powerful bi-rotating agitator with vertical displacement and an optional internal heating circuit. This agitator significantly improves the extractions kinetics and the final yield by ensuring close contact between the raw material (which can be finely ground) and the extraction solvent. The agitator also improves filtration and reduces the time required for solvent extraction and drying of the residue. The filtrating bottom, covering the whole of the lower surface of the unit, allows effective separation of the filtrate and residues. The heating circuit, covering the bottom and shell of the apparatus and on option the agitator, ensures excellent heat transfer for reflux extraction and removal of solvent from residues. Full opening of the filtrating bottom, equipped with a fast-locking bayonet system, enables filter cake to be removed rapidly; it can also be recovered in an enclosed atmosphere through a lateral discharge gate. In short, the EF2 is a unique, optimized solution for both pilot and industrial installations.

  • Does Tournaire Group's Equipment Division sell second-hand equipment?

    The Equipment Division does not keep a stock of second-hand items. However, in the context of the decommissioning or displacement of old units manufactured by Tournaire Group, it may happen from time to time that some second-hand equipment items are available. Contact our sales department to discuss your needs

    Additionally we offer a revamping/conformity service for second-hand equipment.

  • Can your equipment be used in an ATEX zone?

    The frequent use of inflammable solvents in our processes and the production of organic powders mean that our equipment items and units often operate in or generate potentially explosive atmospheres. Thus for the most part they are designed and produced to comply fully with the ATEX 94/9 CE directive.

  • What types of raw materials can be processed in your equipment?

    We propose equipment for the processing of a very wide range of raw materials in various forms, wet or dry, whole or ground, such as: grasses, flowering tops, seeds, powders, rhizomes, flowers, bark, gums, resins, wood, medicinal plants, pods, roots, etc.

    This is a significant feature of our equipment range.

  • Do different types of still exist?

    Processes for the extraction of essential oils by vapor distillation differ depending on the type of raw material to be processed and its particle size. The Equipment Division therefore offers a full range of stills, for distillation by direct injection of steam at atmospheric pressure or under pressure with hydro-distillation. Loading systems are adapted to the raw material particle size.

  • Are there any multi-purpose distillation units?

    Tournaire offers a range of multi-purpose stills for the processing or bulk or powdered raw materials by direct steam distillation or hydro-distillation, at atmospheric pressure or under pressure. They are equipped with removable agitators and different types of loading and discharge systems.

  • Are there several types of separator for separating essential oils from water?

    We have a full range of separators available for light or heavy essential oils.

    For mixed essential oils we offer separators allowing light and heavy oils to be separated in the same apparatus.

    They can be equipped with coalescing filters for essential oils that are difficult to separate, and with heating systems for essential oils containing crystals or that become solid at room temperature.

  • What are the advantages of pressure distillation?

    Distillation under pressure allows a significant reduction in distillation time and the consumption of steam per kilogram of essential oil distilled. It is particularly well suited to the distillation of difficult raw material such as wood, bark, roots, seeds and rhizomes.


  • Do you manufacture any directly-heated stills?

    No. All our stills must be fed with steam supplied by an external steam generator. This mode of operation allows much better control of the distillation, by precise control of the steam pressure and feed rate.