We're sharing knowledgein the areas which fascinate us the most

What does a lab reactor do?

By WHGCM November 9th, 2023 100 views


Laboratory reactors are a subcategory of a reactor when it is categorized according to application scenarios. Another subcategory is production reactors, which are mainly used in production scenarios.  Pilot reactors and industrial reactors are collectively called production reactors.
They are generally small in size, less than 100 liters. Because of its small volume, it is also called a small reactor or microreactor.


Lab reactors are used for reactions including, but not limited to, impregnation, polymerization, synthesis, catalysis, and petrochemicals. They are also used for upstream, intermediate, biomass, biopolymers, zeolites, and other research.
Laboratory reactors are mainly used during the research and teaching process.

In the research, lab reactors are mainly used in various experiments, such as organic synthesis, material preparation, and advanced organic synthesis experiments, such as synthesis, separation, purification, and other experiments.
In addition to scientific research, lab reactors are also used in the teaching of chemistry, pharmacy, biology, and other related professions.
Students need to complete chemical reaction experiments, separation and purification experiments, and other experiments through the reactor, to exercise their experimental operation ability and learn to practice. For students, as one of the experimental teaching equipment, the reactor is a good opportunity for them to familiarize themselves with industrial production equipment.

Features of WHGCM lab reactor

Laboratory reactors manufactured by WHGCM are generally characterized by the presence of certain pressure environments ( We also have uploaded a lot of videos, the lab reactors youtube shown are finished products by WHGCM ).
These pressures can be generated by the reaction itself or by external sources, such as hydrogenation impregnation in catalytic transfer impregnation reactions.
In general, WHGCM's range of specifications for laboratory reactors are as follows:

Reaction vessel specifications:

Nominal volume 0.01-100L
Material: Carbon steel, stainless steel SS316, SS316L, SS304, SS304L, SS201, other non-ferrous metals, alloys, Hastelloy, Monel, Nickel, Inconel, Titanium, Zirconium, and so on.
Design pressure: 100~450bar
Design temperature: -196~450°C
Reactor agitator speed: 20~1500rpm
Seal form: magnetic seal ( magnetic coupling on the shaft, totally closed welding on the reaction vessel) or mechanical seal
When using magnetic seals, it is generally necessary to cooperate with the use of magnetic coupling drives. This is the technology that distinguishes WHGCM from other reactor manufacturers.
It has the following advantages
* 100% sealing. Zero leakage.
* Zero discharge of hazardous liquids.
* Suitable for pressure fluctuations.
* Available in a wide range of capacities.
* Compact design.
Reactor agitator types: 
(The choice of reactor agitator types is generally closely related to the reaction needs. For example, for Hydrogenation reactor, we generally use a gas distributor and self-absorbing stirring shaft, which can ensure that the gas bubbles from the bottom of the reactor are rising, so as to have a larger contact area with the reactants. In addition, due to the existence of a self-absorbing stirring shaft, the liquid reactants can be circulated up and down, while the stirring paddle prompts the liquid reactants to rotate horizontally counterclockwise, and the contact effect between the reactants and hydrogen will be further increased under the two forms of fluid movement.)
Lots of paddle types of agitators to choose from:
The propeller type, turbine type, anchor type, belt type, frame type, and others.
Paddles picture of agitator

Heating method: electric heating, jacket heating or coil heating, far-infrared heating
The choice of heating method is actually the choice of the heater.
For example, electric heating is actually generally used for heating rods. Jacket heating or coil heating is the use of the jacket or coil installed on or in the reaction vessel.
Regarding the jacket or coil method, we use its space for heat exchange, by putting a heat-conducting medium into the jacket or coil. If the medium passed into the jacket is used for refrigeration, such as liquid nitrogen, then it will cause a refrigeration effect on the reaction kettle. This is also the way in many cases we make laboratory reactors for rapid warming and cooling. I.e., equip a jacket or coil and a heating unit t
o the reactor. The jacket or coil is fed with refrigerant for cooling. The other heating unit is used exclusively for warming.
When heating is required, close the jacket or coil inlet and turn on the heating equipment. When it is time to cool down, turn off the heating equipment, open the jacket or coil inlet, and connect the refrigerant. In this way, the rapid warming and cooling operation of the laboratory reactor is completed.

Internal components:

Internal cooling coil
Agitators and impellers
Immersion tube
Temperature measuring tube
Pressure gauges/rupture discs/vacuum gauges/pressure sensors

External components:

Control system
Can be equipped with PID or PLC controller, intelligent digital temperature control, including temperature, stirring speed display and control, and working time display.
IoT can be connected to realize remote control.
Reactor, control system, but also with a variety of auxiliary accessories, such as condenser, reflux, collection tanks, buffer tanks, vacuum pumps, circulating pumps, hot and cold circulation of an integrated machine, bracket, etc., These parts could form an automatic or semi-auto reaction system, which is made of a part of the laboratory reactor system.

Application  of WHGCM laboratory reactor

The WHGCM laboratory reactor not only covers the applications of a normal reactor but is also suitable for high-temperature and high-pressure reactions.
As mentioned earlier, its maximum temperature can reach 450°C and the maximum pressure can be 450 bar, which makes the WHGCM reactor very suitable for reactions requiring extreme experimental conditions.
In addition, WHGCM laboratory reactors can also be customized according to customer requirements. The materials used for the reactors can be metallic as well as non-metallic.
Inside our laboratory reactor workshop, there are 3 engineers and more than ten professional technicians. We have abundant spare parts in the warehouse and can guarantee a one-week lead time of fabrication.

WHGCM is located in China's large market, backed by a developed transportation network and industrial clusters, and benefits from fast and rapid upstream and downstream cooperation. Therefore, it also has a great advantage in price compared with general manufacturers.
For more details about high-end laboratory reactors, pls click here.
What does a ultra high pressure reactor do?
Read More
Please fill out the form below and click the button to request more information about
Temprature required*
Volume of Reactor*
Pressure of the reactor*
Medium for reaction*
Other requirement on the reactor( <5000 Characters)