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Synthesis of biodiesel from waste vegetable oil with large amounts of free fatty acids using a carbon-based solid acid catalyst

Qing Shu, Jixian Gao, Zeeshan Nawaz, Yuhui Liao, Dezheng Wang and Jinfu Wang

Applied Energy, 2010, vol. 87, issue 8, 2589-2596

Abstract: A carbon-based solid acid catalyst was prepared by the sulfonation of carbonized vegetable oil asphalt. This catalyst was employed to simultaneously catalyze esterification and transesterification to synthesis biodiesel when a waste vegetable oil with large amounts of free fatty acids (FFAs) was used as feedstock. The physical and chemical properties of this catalyst were characterized by a variety of techniques. The maximum conversion of triglyceride and FFA reached 80.5 wt.% and 94.8 wt.% after 4.5 h at 220 °C, when using a 16.8 M ratio of methanol to oil and 0.2 wt.% of catalyst to oil. The high catalytic activity and stability of this catalyst was related to its high acid site density (-OH, Brönsted acid sites), hydrophobicity that prevented the hydration of -OH species, hydrophilic functional groups (-SO3H) that gave improved accessibility of methanol to the triglyceride and FFAs, and large pores that provided more acid sites for the reactants.

Keywords: Biodiesel; Waste; vegetable; oil; Carbon-based; solid; acid; catalyst; Simultaneous; transesterification; and; esterification (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010
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