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European Online Journal of Natural and Social Sciences

A Novel Membrane Reactor for Production of High-Purity Biodiesel

Motahareh Vares, Mohammad Reza Sarmasti Emami, Kambiz Tahvildari


Today, purification of Trans-esterified product posed a great challenging in commercial production and application of biodiesel fuel. Membrane reactor technologies are proven to be effective ways to achieve optimum yields and reduce energy costs for biodiesel production. In this study, a novel membrane reactor has been successfully developed to produce high quality methyl esters from canola oil. This novel reactor enabled the separation of FAME from the reactants and by-products. The biodiesel obtained from ceramic membrane with 0.05 µm pore size gave purity of 96.42%, besides properties such as kinematic viscosity (5.32 mm/s2), density (0.886 g/cm3), flash point (142.5 0C), pour point (-120C) and cetane number (52) conforming the ASTM specification. The obtained results showed that membrane reactor is a suitable alternative for biodiesel production. Effect of various parameters such as methanol/oil molar ratio (4:1-7:1), catalyst concentration (0.25-1.50%) and reaction time (1-7h) were investigated. The biodiesel with best yield and quality was produced at methanol/oil molar ratio, 6:1; potassium hydroxide catalyst concentration, 1.0% and reaction time 7 h. The yield of biodiesel produced under optimal conditions was 96.42%.


Transesterification, Biodiesel, Membrane Reactor, Canola oil

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