OPTIMIZATION OF BIODIESEL PRODUCTION FROM YELLOW OLEANDER AND CASTOR OILS AND STUDIES OF THEIR FUEL PROPERTIES
The optimization of biodiesel production from two non-edible oils and studies of their fuel and biodegradability properties was carried out. The two oil feedstocks (Yellow oleander and Castor oils) were extracted from their seeds using an oil expeller and their physicochemical properties such as iodine value, moisture content, saponification value, acid value, viscosity, specific gravity and refractive index were determined. Most of these properties were within the acceptable limit of American Standard Testing Method (ASTM). The methyl esters were optimized using methanol as solvent and by varying conditions like reaction temperature, reaction time, type and concentration of catalyst, molar ratio of methanol and oil. For maximum bio diesel production, the transesterification reaction showed that the concentration of alkali catalyst was 0.8 % sodium hydroxide, 0.33 %v/v alcohol/oil ratio, 1 hr reaction time, 60 0C temperature and excess alcohol 150 %v/v. Optimized parameters for production of biodiesel through base catalyzed transesterification gave maximum yield of 96 % and 98 % for yellow oleander and castor oil respectively. The Yellow Oleander Methyl Ester (YOME) and Castor Oil Methyl Ester (COME) and their diesel blends were comparatively analysed for fuel properties such as flash point, relative density, kinematic viscosity, calorific value, distillation, sulphur, phosphorous, water content, cetane number and acid number . The methyl ester of yellow oleander was found to have properties closer to ASTM D 6751 fuel specifications than that of castor oil. It is further observed from the results that the biodiesel from yellow oleander and castor oil are environmentally friendly, such that after spillage, it will take about 28 days for them to have biodegradability of 82.4 and 87.3 for YOME and COME respectively. This is an advantage over petro-diesel which was found to have biodegradability of 25.29 in 28 days.
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