keywords: Biodiesel, cetane rating, characterization, transesterification, used vegetable oil, yield
The transesterification of used cooking oil with short-chain alcohols, in the presence of base catalyst sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and methanol as solvent, by means of single step batch process in order to obtain biodiesel fuel was studied using a reaction ratio of 6:1 for alcohol: oil. The process variables that were investigated are catalyst concentration and reaction time. The biodiesel yield for the samples (Sample 1, Sample 2 and Sample 3) were 58 mL, 79 mL and 70 mL, respectively while the glycerine yield for the samples (Sample 1, Sample 2 and Sample 3) were 19 mL, 19 mL and 20 mL, respectively. The reaction times for the three samples (Sample 1, Sample 2 and Sample 3) were 60, 90 and 120 min, respectively. The best result for highest yield and highest purity was at 90 mins reaction time and 1.5 g catalyst concentration. Sample 2 (sample with 1.5 g catalyst concentration, heated at 65oC for 90 min) was found to have the highest cetane rating closer to the ASTM standard which implies that sample 2 will be a more efficient fuel than the other two samples, with guaranteed smooth running of diesel engine as well as clean burning.
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