For Chromatography and Purification Processes

Aluminium Oxide is one of the most versatile sorbents for preparative chromatography. Due to its amphoteric character, Aluminium Oxides can be used in specifically defined pH ranges.

CAMAG manufactures the various types of Aluminium Oxide, which are used in the following purification processes:

Pilot Plant preparation column chromatography Genzyme Pharmaceuticals
Pilot Plant preparation column chromatography Genzyme Pharmaceuticals

Preparative Column Chromatography

is a widely used technique to separate and purify API’s (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient) from lab scale to pilot plant and up to production scale in large columns under hydrostatic or low pressure. Since the Aluminium Oxides are of a wide particle size range, packing techniques must insure that segregation does not occur. This is best accomplished by dry packing, then equilibrating the alumina with the solvent to be used for the separation. If wet packing is done, it must be done with a thick mud-like slurry.

Flash Chromatography

is a rapid form of preparative column chromatography. Prep LC based upon «an air pressure driven hybrid of medium and short column chromatography optimized for rapid separation». Flash chromatography is typically used when the differences on TLC are greater than 0.15 Rf units. Flash Chromatography is a simple and economical approach to Prep LC.

Selective filtration

is done by feeding the contaminated solvent extract through a short bed of Aluminium Oxide in large column systems which are run under vacuum, hydrostatic or gas pressure. Two typical modes are found: ‹Frontal Elution› or ‹Solid Phase Extraction›. ‹Frontal Elution› of the extract is commonly used when the extract is complex and/or colored. The extract is fed through a bed of Aluminium Oxide while the decolorized product is collected. Solid Phase Extraction of the mixture is preferred when the product is highly diluted. The product is selectively bound to Aluminium Oxide and eluted in a small volume after saturation of the matrix.

Application – Recommended type of Aluminium Oxide

Alkaloids: Basic, medium activity
Isolation, of ergot-, opium-, rauwolfia-, and other alkaloids

Antibiotics: Neutral
Isolation, purification

Essential Oils: Basic, Neutral
Removal of terpenes

Plant Extraction: Basic, Neutral, Acid
Isolation of active substances

Dehydration of organic solvents: Basic, highly active

Enzymes: Neutral

Glycosides: Neutral
Isolation of digitalis-, strophantus-glycosides,etc.

Removal of Peroxides: Basic, highly active
From organic solvents

Hormones: Neutral
Isolation and purification of ketosteroids from neutral materials

Purification of organic solvents: Basic, highly active
For technical purposes

Oils: Basic
Clarification of fatty oils, separation of fatty acids

Method Development

Thin-layer chromatography (TLC) is a convenient and fast technique that most of the time provides complete separation of fairly complex mixtures. Any sample type that has been successfully separated by TLC on silica or alumina plates can be separated by means of liquid / solid chromatography. Mobile phase optimization using TLC can easily be carried out using CAMAG HPTLC Variosystem.

This system allows a sample with six different mobile phases to be tested in parallel on one plate within a very short period. Taking some basic rules into account, the mobile phase composition established by means of TLC can be used directly for preparative chromatographic applications.

Brockmann Activity

Normally Aluminium Oxide is used with activity I. The relative humidity of Aluminium Oxide is highly responsible for the chromatographic result. In the state of equilibration the rel. humidity corresponds with the activity. The correlation between rel. humidity and activity acc. to Brockmann is shown in the table.

CAMAG has manufactured Aluminium Oxide since 1959.

The product, widely used in the pharmaceutical and chemical industries in purification processes is of excellent quality due to the fact that CAMAG has well-trained employees, has a reliable supplier of the raw material, and a standardized manufacturing process.

SQS Certificate ISO 9001-2015

CAMAG has a comprehensive Quality System according to ISO 9001:2015. The quality assurance starts at product development, proceeds through quality control of all purchases, and covers all stages of production including final inspection.

The CAMAG laboratory works in accordance with ISO 17025 standard.

Specifications of Aluminium Oxide



REACH registration No.





weakly acidic


(10 % aqueous suspension)

9.5 ± 1.0

7.0 ± 0.5

6.0 ± 0.5

4.5 ± 0.5

Cl‘ [%]

< 0.002

Contains small amounts of chloride, to adjust pH hydrogen chloride is used

Water Content

Brockmann Activity I (most activated form)
(Brockmann Activity II – V available on request)

Na2O [%] 1)

< 0.4

Fe2O3 [%] 1)

< 0.03

SiO2 [%] 1)

< 0.03

Bulk Density [kg/m3]

~ 920

Particle Size Distribution

                 < 40 µm ≤ 5 %

                 40-300 µm ≥ 95 % (main fraction around 100 µm)

Specific Surface Area

205 m2/g ± 10 %

Mean Pore Diameter [nm] 2)


General Information


50 kg

also available are 1 kg, 5 kg, 20 kg or 25 kg


Powder, no lumps


            White, off white

Safety Information

This product is not classified under Regulation (EC) 1272/2008. It is non-hazardous, non-toxic and not inflammable.

Information contained herein is intended for evaluation by technically skilled persons, and is to be used at their own risk. Properties and analyses are intended as representative examples and are not to be considered as substitutes for actual analyses in those situations where they are critical factors. The Information is believed to be reliable, but CAMAG assumes no responsibility for results obtained or damages resulting from such use.

1) determined for raw material
2) typical value for information purposes, not specifically measured

Country of origin: Switzerland

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