Chemistries & Processes

Chemistry is a core competence of Microinnova. Over the years we have acquired knowledge from many different industrial applications in different branches. We develop and scale processes using continuous processing technology employing a batch-to-conti approach.

Check out how we convert batch processes to flow over here.

Shown below is an outline of the types of chemistry we have come across, representing both specifically named reactions and different reaction types.

Apart from chemical reactions themselves, we also specialize in workup steps as well as liquid and semi-solid formulations. If you have a question or would like to know how we can support your chemical production, please get in touch.

Named Reactions using Flow Technology

  • Michael addition
  • Robinson annulation reaction
  • Fischer-Tropsch synthesis
  • Wittig reaction
  • Wolff Kishner reaction
  • Schotten Baumann reaction
  • Favorskii rearrangement
  • Mukaiyama aldol addition
  • Williamson ether synthesis
  • Suzuki-Miyaura coupling

Continuous Synthesis using Metal Organic Reagents

  • Reactions with butyl-lithium (BuLi)
  • Reactions with hexyl-lithium (HexLi)
  • Reactions with silica
  • Grignard reagent formation
  • Reaction with Grignard reagent(s)
  • Reduction reactions with lithium-aluminum-hydride (LAH)
  • Various reactions with other organo-metallic compounds

Continuous Gas Catalytic Reactions

  • Fischer-Tropsch process
  • Methanol production using syngas
  • CO2 capture

Continuous Liquid-Gas Reactions (Partly with Solid Catalysts)

  • Hydrogenation of nitro-compounds
  • Hydrogenation of polymers
  • Hydrogenation of various API intermediates
  • Oxidation reactions
  • Epoxidation of aromatics
  • Epoxidation of alkenes
  • Reactions with liquid ammonia

Liquid-Liquid Reactions Using Flow Chemistry

  • Synthesis of peroxy compounds
  • Ethoxylations
  • Propoxylations
  • Ether formation
  • Esterification
  • Transesterification
  • Sulfonation of heterocyclic compounds
  • Sulfonation of aromatic compounds
  • Nitration of aromatics
  • Acetylation
  • Acylation
  • Dehydration
  • Amidation
  • Hydrosilylation
  • Amination
  • Acetoxylation
  • Alkylation
  • Oxirane ring formation
  • Oxirane ring-opening with different molecules
  • Radical α–alkylation of ketones with alcohol
  • Synthesis of phenolic-novolac-type resin
  • TEMPO-catalyzed oxidation
  • Ionic liquid synthesis

Continuous Processes Requiring a Fixed Bed Catalyst

  • Decarboxylation
  • Hydrogenations
  • Oxidation

Continuous Processes Employing Slurry Dosing

  • Grignard reaction
  • Modification of functional groups of polymers
  • Cross-linking of polymers
  • Formylation
  • Esterification

Continuous Enzymatic Reactions

  • Enzymatic oxidations
  • Enzymatic transesterifications
  • Enzymatic hydrolysis

Formulation

  • Shower gel
  • Skin cream
  • Toothpaste
  • Adhesive premixes
  • Interfacial polymerization
  • Lithium complex grease

Halogenation in Continuous Flow

  • Fluorination with fluorine gas
  • Reactions with HF complexes
  • Hydrofluorination
  • Chlorination of alcohols
  • Selective chlorination of sidechains
  • Chlorination of aromatic compounds
  • Generation of bromine (liquid)
  • Bromination reactions
  • Aromatic iodination

Continuous Polymerization Processes

  • Free radical polymerization
  • Ionic polymerizations e.g., polyurethane dispersion (PUD) synthesis
  • Polyester synthesis

Continuous Modification of Polymers

  • Modification of functional groups
  • Cross-linking
  • End capping

Other Flow Processes Related to Polymers

  • Urethane monomer synthesis
  • Dicarboxylic acid monomers
  • Oligomer synthesis
  • Backbone structures for formulation (e.g., gel structures)
  • Polymeric encapsulation (Interfacial area polymerization)
  • Synthesis of radical starters for initiating radical polymerization

Continuous Separation Processes

  • Extraction
  • Distillation
  • Ion-exchange
  • Various types of precipitations
  • Crystallizations
  • Continuous crystalline product filtration
  • Physical and chemical drying

Chemical Process Development Capabilities

With experience in over 80 different types of chemistries, Microinnova has supported a wide variety of chemical reactions and processes using flow chemistry technology.

Processing in flow typically enables much better process understanding and helps to increase the process capability. Typical advantages over traditional batch technology are a shift in mass and/or heat transfer, a reduction in the number of unit operations, or an increase in the safety level of the process. The philosophy of providing the best possible technology for a process or a chemical transformation leads to the realization of highly efficient processes.  

Special materials used in flow reactions:

  • Silicon Carbide
  • Tantalum
  • Glass
  • Hastelloy
  • Various grades of steel

Dosing capabilities:

  • Liquids
  • Gases (also in liquid form)
  • Solids:
    • Powders
    • Suspensions
    • Melted educt

Processing of challenging substances:

  • Pyrophoric or self-igniting substances
  • High viscosities up to 200,000 mPas
  • Hot and concentrated acids (e.g. HCl, Oleum)
  • Water H2O-sensitive processes
  • Generation and handling of solids (Precipitation, Crystallization…)

Extreme processing conditions:

  • Up to 400 °C liquid processes
  • Down to – 60 °C for cryogenic processes
  • Up to 100 bar pressure

Exothermic processes:

  • Nitrations
  • Ethoxylations
  • Propoxilations
  • Fluorinations

For special reactions, please get in touch to see if we can support your flow chemistry program!

Processing of toxic substances:

  • Hydrous & anhydrous hydrofluorine HF, fluorine gas F2
  • Hydrous & anhydrous hydrochloric acid HCl, chlorine gas Cl2
  • Ethylene oxide EO
  • Carbon monoxide CO

Catalyst preparation:

  • For heterogeneous reactions
  • For homogenous processes

Analytical Capabilities

  • Flow calorimetry
  • Nuclear magnetic resonance NMR desktop flow
  • High-Performance liquid chromatography HPLC systems UV/VIS, DAD
  • Gas chromatography GC
  • Particle size distribution PSD laser diffraction
  • Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy FT-IR
  • Ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy UV-Vis
  • Viscosity – Brookfield, Hoeppler
  • Titration
  • pH in flow
  • Conductivity