Evaluation of Biodiesel Production from Babassu Oil and Ethanol Applying Alkaline Transesterification Under Ultrasonic Technology

E. J. M. Paiva
School of Engineering of Lorena – University of São Paulo, Lorena, Brazil

M. L. C. P. Silva
School of Engineering of Lorena – University of São Paulo, Lorena, Brazil

H. F. Castro
School of Engineering of Lorena – University of São Paulo, Lorena, Brazil

J. C. S. Barboza
School of Engineering of Lorena – University of São Paulo, Lorena, Brazil

D. S. Giordani
School of Engineering of Lorena – University of São Paulo, Lorena, Brazil

Ladda ner artikelhttp://dx.doi.org/10.3384/ecp11057303

Ingår i: World Renewable Energy Congress - Sweden; 8-13 May; 2011; Linköping; Sweden

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 57:41, s. 303-310

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Publicerad: 2011-11-03

ISBN: 978-91-7393-070-3

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Babassu oil is a clear light yellow vegetable oil extracted from the seeds of the babassu palm (Attalea speciosa); which grows in most areas of South America. It is about 70% lipids; with 50% of lauric composition. Brazil is the world’s second largest producer of ethanol and the world’s largest exporter; the advantages of ethanol are concerned to its renewable origin and low toxicity. In this work ethyl esters of babassu oil were synthesized by alkaline catalysis in homogeneous medium. The experimental design was used as a tool for optimization of the transesterification reaction and also in identifying key factors influencing the conversion into ethyl esters. The transesterification reactions were performed using two methods - the traditional mechanical agitation and agitation promoted by ultrasound waves. The nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to quantify the conversion of all reactions of transesterification. According to the model obtained by the experimental design for mechanical agitation; conversions above 99% are obtained when the stoichiometric ratio is set at 6:1; with 1.0% KOH; under stirring at 400 rpm; in 60 min. Alkaline transesterification assisted by ultrasound waves produced the best results with respect to time of reaction and phase separation of glycerin and ethyl esters. The experimental model showed that conversions above 99% can be obtained in 10 min after adjusting the other independent variables.


Biodiesel; Babassu oil; Transesterification; Ethanol; Ultrasound


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