Kinetic Studies of Biodiesel Production from Jatropha curcas Oil
The world is confronted with the twin crisis of fossil fuel depletion and environmental degradation caused by fossil fuel usage. Biodiesel produced from renewable feedstocks such as Jatropha seed oil or animal fats by transesterification offers a solution. Although biodiesel has been produced from various vegetable oils such as Jatropha seed oil, the reaction kinetics studies are very few in literature, hence the need for this study. Jatropha curcas seed oil was extracted and analyzed to determine its free fatty acid and fatty acid composition. The oil was transesterified with methanol at a molar ratio of methanol to oil 8:1, using 1% sodium hydroxide catalyst, at different temperatures ranging from 32oC to 65oC, at atmospheric pressure. The order of the reactions with respect to the triglyceride's disappearance in the forward reaction at the chosen temperatures was found to be pseudo-first-order and found to be first-order for the reaction at 32oC. The rate constants of the three consecutive reaction steps at 65oC, namely, triglyceride to diglyceride, diglyceride to monoglyceride, and monoglyceride to glycerol, were found to be 0.422 min-1 0.117 min-1, and 0.037min-1, respectively. Their corresponding activation energies in J/mol were 22.165, 3.136, and 19.770, respectively.
Article received: 9/5/2020
Article accepted: 13/12/2020
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