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Biodiesel: A cleaner source of energy

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  1. Introduction
  2. The concept of biodiesel as a cleaner source of energy
    1. History
    2. Methods of production
  3. Alkali-catalyzed process to manufacture biodiesel
    1. Process description
    2. Process flow chart
    3. Factors affecting the process
    4. Applications
  4. Conclusion
  5. References

A majority of the countries in the world are importers of petroleum and its products. The fossil fuels are being consumed at a rate, which is a million times faster than their rate of formation. The prices of petroleum products are mounting at an alarming pace due to the unmatched contribution to our energy requirements. The fast depletion of the reserves is another major factor contributing to the rise in prices. Most developing countries are in the initial stages of industrialization; their energy consumption has been growing at a greater rate compared with that of the developed countries. During 1990-2000, conventional energy consumption of the Asia-Pacific countries increased by 32.5 % compared with 11 % growth of world consumption. The trend of growth in global energy consumption is expected to continue in the future primarily because of the expected growth in world population and the economic growth of the developing countries.

[...] In this process the methanol and anhydrous NaOH/KOH (catalyst) is initially mixed well to form methoxide .The flow rates are adjusted to get a molar ratio of 6 of methanol to oil inside the reactor. ACID CATALYSED METHOD In the acid catalyzed process the reactions are carried out at 80oC and 400 KPa and employs sulfuric acid as catalyst. The essence of this process which makes it important is its insensitivity to the presence of the fatty acid content in the oils which affect the yield of biodiesel. [...]

[...] FACTORS AFFECTING THE PROCESS: Type Of Catalyst and Concentration Water Content Free Fatty Acid Content Quality of feed oil APPLICATIONS: Automobile and passenger vehicle: A viable alternative source to diesel it can be used in existing diesel engines without any modification (using B-20 blends) thereby eliminating the need concerning the setting up of required infrastructure for its commercial application. Heating oil: Biodiesel has quickly gained importance as a way to heat homes and buildings in cold countries. It is clear that biodiesel can mitigate some of the negative attributes of heating oil since the sulfur content is virtually zero it will have a positive impact on the burner reliability and efficiency (with biodiesel showing a tendency toward less smoke and sulfur oxides). [...]

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