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Phase Separators

The latest innovation in phase separation, More efficient than traditional glass separating funnels

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Phase separators are a range of columns fitted with a selectively permeable, optimized frit material that separates aqueous phase from an organic phase under gravity. The design is as simple as it is ingenious. There are no moving parts and nothing to prime, it’s all achieved by hydrophobic/hydrophilic interactions.

There are two types of phase sepearator in the family. The Universal Phase Separator is designed to seperate when the organic phase (ethyl acetate, hexanes, toluene etc) is above the aqueous phase and the Isolute Phase Separator is optimized for the seperation of heavier chlorinated solvents from water.

The Universal phase separator comes with everything needed for the first uses, as an easy to assemble kit, consisting of full instructions, 2 outer tubes, 3 inserts and 2 luer adaptors.  Replacement insert packs (of 25) are available.

The ISOLUTE® phase separators also come, ready to use in convenient packages of 25-100 (depending on size).


There are no moving parts, nothing to prime, its all achieved by hydrophobic/hydrophilic interactions, the cartridges arrive ready to use and are compatible with a wide variety of solvents.

How Phase Separators Work

The compound is partitioned, due to differences in solubility, between two immiscible liquids. The lower organic phase can pass through the frit, the upper aqueous phase physically cannot. There is an automatic cut-off at the organic/aqueous interface.

Reasons customers choose Phase Separators


Phase Separators comply with 6 of the key principles of Green Chemistry - prevent excess lab waste, maximize atom economy, facilitate use of safer chemicals and products, and utilize less hazardous chemical synthesis, increase energy efficiency, and minimize the potential for accidents.


The life-time cost of a glass sep-funnel can average around $150. Also, itis easy to use more solvent than necessary using a glass funnel, as it is tempting to over-extract. All this means the cost of solvent (approx 2-3 washes, of 50-100mL, over 20 uses) is higher than it needs to be when using a glass funnel. Compare this to phase separators. They're economic, easy to use, fast and disposable, so no contamination issues either.


Save time, reduce solvent, Phase Separator tubes are easier to store than glass sep funnels, and are geometrically designed to line up on a FlashVac or rack system, thus enabling the chemist to carry out multiple extractions in parallel. After-use, there is no need to waste valuable time and detergent / solvent, by re-washing, the disposable format allows for a very fast turn around and cycle time for further exactions.


Phase Separators are designed to stand alone, working by unattended operation. Just open the lower tap (optional accessory) and walk away, the cut off is automatic.

Typical Performance

Solvent Solvent Flow (mL/min) Water Hold Up
Polarity Index Water Solubility
Heptane/hexane 7.0 12+ hrs 0.1 0.0004/0.0012
Petroleum ether 6.0 12+ hrs 0.1 -
Toluene 7.5 12+ hrs 2.4 0.05
Dichloromethane 15 12+ hrs 3.1 1.3
Ethyl acetate* 8-10 5-120 min 4.4 8.7