The isolation and yields of volatile oils from the biomass of coniferous species
Vyskot, M.; Coufalikova, J.
Lesnictvi 36(8): 675-692
Air pollution, great natural catastrophes and exploitation of natural resources are menacing the forests and in this way the human society. Timber consumption is increasing and timber is being wasted tremendously. This is the reason why it is necessary to make better use of dendromass resources, including all its available parts. Therefore monographies were written about the balance and utilization of forest biomass, considering the development of the forest resource; their essential ideas were included into three patents to be applied in practical conditions. Volatile oils, which are used in the food, pharmaceutic and cosmetic industries, and for the production of paints and varnishes, can be recovered during the processing of coniferous biomass. In this connection it is necessary to know the yield and composition of volatile oils. In 1983 to 1987 the yield of volatile oils in the following commercially important conifers was investigated: Picea abies (L.) Karst., Abies alba Mill., Pinus sylvestris L., Larix decidua Mill., Abies grandis (Dougl. ex D. Don) Lindl. and Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirbel) Franco. The samples were taken in young stands in the group of forest types Querceto-Fagetum. The needles were steam-distilled. The recovered volatile oils were vacuum distilled and then analyzed on a gas chromatograph. The five-year investigation brought about the following yields of volatile oils: 0.04 to 0.27% in spruce, 0.54 to 0.82% in silver fir, 0.19 to 0.43% in pine and 0.00 to 0.21% in larch. The yield in grand fir made 0.49 to 1.09% and in Douglas fir 0.33 to 1.15%. It can be seen that the relatively highest yield was obtained in silver fir and Douglas fir. But mainly the spruce and pine are commercially important. The gas chromatography revealed that limonene and .beta.-pinene are prevailing volatile oils in spruce, limonene and phellandrene in fir, limonene and .alpha.-pinene in pine; the same volatile oils prevail in larch and grand fir, while Douglas fir has the highest contents of .beta.-pinene, .alpha.-pinene and bornylacetate.