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Lookup NU author(s): Professor Anh Phan,
Professor Adam Harvey,
Dr Valentine Eze
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Continuous alkali-catalyzed transesterification of rapeseed oil with methanol was carried out in three mesoreactor designs. The induction time decreased with oscillatory Reynolds number for all three reactors. Stable steady states were achieved within induction times of 1.5, 2.5, and 4.0 residence times for the integral, wire wool, and helical baffle designs, respectively. Both experimental and simulated results indicated that under the given conditions there is an optimal residence time for homogeneous transesterification. Higher residence times resulted in reduced fatty acid methyl ester content due to the saponification side reaction. The results demonstrate that biodiesel can be produced at an industrially acceptable level of conversion (>95%) in <5min residence time. This requires a combination of high catalyst concentration and good mixing. © 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.
Author(s): Phan AN, Harvey AP, Eze V
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Chemical Engineering & Technology
Print publication date: 31/05/2012
ISSN (print): 0930-7516
ISSN (electronic): 1521-4125
Publisher: Wiley - V C H Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
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