Effect of Catalyst Type on the Properties of Biodiesel from Jathropha and Moringa Oil Blend
Various methods of biodiesel production have been developed in the recent past to reduce production costs. These new approaches may have varying effects on ester quality. Thus an investigation is necessary to determine cost saving measures that do not compromise ester quality. This work examined the effects of a cost saving strategy on Biodiesel quality. This conservative method involved the transesterification of a Jathropha-Moringa oil blend using a blend of two primary alcohols. Three alkaline catalysts were also used. The reaction conditions were: Jathropha to Moringa oil blending ratio of 4:1; Methanol to ethanol blending ratio of 4:1; Alkaline catalyst concentration of 0.5 w/w %; reaction time of 40 minutes; stirring speed of 1000 rpm; Temperature of 60°C and an Alcohol to oil molar ratio of 7.5. Biodiesel samples were tested according to ASTM D6751 and AOCS guidelines. Results indicated that the density, iodine values, flash point and fire points of esters did not vary significantly as the experiment was repeated using three different alkaline catalysts. It also showed that the effect of NaOH, KOH and CaO were not always negative when they were significant. Lastly, the methods applied in this did not compromise ester quality with regard to observed fuel parameters.
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