Single-Column SMB

Novel one-column system with internal distributors.

Continuous Chromatographic Separation

Simulated moving bed (SMB) chromatography is a continuous separation process that emulates the countercurrent flow of the solid phase and liquids.

Unlike conventional multi-column systems, our single-column technology - eSMB - offers continuous separation of mixtures based on simulated moving bed technology done in a single adsorbent bed which is separated into several zones by internal distributors.


Potential applications range from routine SMB separation tasks in the food industries to innovative processes for the fine chemical and biotechnology industries. We support you every step of the way from process development in our mobile lab and pilot facilities to turnkey installation of industrial plants.

The availability of a wide array of design concepts makes it possible to offer process development solutions for anything from compact, mobile lab-scale units to industrial plants with high throughputs.

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Single-Column System With Internal Distributors

The Vogelbusch eSMB process performs the separation in a single chromatography column, filled with an adsorbent.

The column contains - in its simplest form - three patented internal distributors for injection and withdrawal of process media, which divide the column into four zones of equal size. The bottom is connected to the head of the column by means of a circulation pipe. 

The incoming fluids pass over the distributors embedded in the adsorbent while the outgoing fluids are drawn off by the same.

In combination with the recirculation of the liquid, a countercurrent flow of liquid and solid phase is simulated by periodic switching of the individual inlet and outlet ports of the column.

Simple And Easy

Separation in an eSMB system has many advantages over a multi-column system in day-to-day operation, including

  • Simple separation apparatus
  • Easy, one-step column charging
  • Improved separation performance due to optimized plug flow
  • Top performance in applications with high osmotic pressure
  • Reduced pressure drop
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Lab Test Unit

Trial tests and pre-studies are carried out in a 4 zone eSMB unit in lab-scale. Its small size makes it particularly suitable for separation tasks in the field of small sample volumes, e. g. the purification of protein.

Designed as a mobile test facility it is available for rent for trials at customer’s lab. 

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Pilot Plant

Development of new processes and scale-up is carried out in our eSMB pilot system with up to 100 liters of resin bed. 

Here we can develop new applications with our clients and carry out tests to form the sound basis for scale-up to industrial plant size.