Synthesis of Biofuel from Palm Stearin Using an Activated Carbon Supported Catalyst in Packed Column Reactor
Supported calcium oxide solid-base catalyst was prepared by the conventional incipient-wetness impregnation of aqueous solutions of the corresponding Ca(NO3)2·4H2O precursors on a palm shell activated carbon support. This catalyst was employed to catalyze transesterification to synthesis biodiesel when palm stearin was used as feedstock. Continuous transesterification of palm stearin with methanol was carried out with activated carbon supported metal oxide solid-base catalyst in a packed column reactor with an external diameter of 60 mm and a height of 345 mm to produce biodiesel. The physical and chemical properties of the produced biodiesel were determined and compared with the standard specifications. The maximum conversion of triglyceride reached 96% after 6 h at 60 °C, when using a 25:1 ratio of methanol to oil and 295 mm packed bed height of catalyst. The results showed that palm shell activated carbon supported calcium oxide solid-base catalyst presented more efficiently catalytic activity in a packed column reactor. Activated carbon is a promising solid catalyst for the production of biodiesel fuels from palm stearin because of its high performance in the conversions over 90% for the transesterifications.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 2013
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