TRANSESTERED BALANITES AEGYPTIACA DEL L.(BALANITES) OIL AS A BIODIESEL FUEL AND PROCESS PARAMETER VARIATION TO OBTAIN MAXIMUM ESTER YIELDS.J. Deshmukh and L.B. Bhuyar
Efforts are under way in many countries, to search for suitable alternative diesel fuels that are environment friendly. The need to search for these fuels arises mainly from the standpoint of preserving the global environment and the concern about' long-term supplies of conventional hydrocarbon-based diesel fuels. Among the different possible sources, diesel fuels derived from vegetable oils and its esters(biodiesel) present a promising alternative to substitute diesel fuels. Keeping in view the Indian scenario where biodiesel is mainly prepared form non-edible oils, an unutilized and easily available oil source in rural India is tested for biodiesel production. The kernel of balanites fruit contains 45-50% of oil on weight basis. The crude oil obtained after oil extraction, allowed undergoing a transesterification process with methanol, potassium hydroxide used as a catalyst. During the study, it was found that the transesterification reaction of methanol with balanites oil in the molar ratio of 8:1 with KOH 1.25% by weight of oil as a catalyst gives maximum ester yield of 95% for the reaction time of 60 minutes. The biodiesel thus obtained is characterized for its physical properties. The viscosity of biodiesel was reduced by 89% after transesterification where as the calorific value is 95% less than that of diesel. The properties of balanites oil methyl esters are quiet comparable diesel.
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