A feasibility study to produce biodiesel from date seed oil by using trans- esterification process.
Aziz AL-Hasni, Athraa Aziz Saif
There is a need to produce renewable energy resources to reduce the gap between supply and demand. The renewable energy can be generated from various kinds of resources like vegetable oils and animal fats. Biodiesel is one of alternative energy resources that can be an appealing option to solve many of global and environmental issues and crises. Production of biodiesel from several types of vegetable oils has become a promising option. The aim of this technical project is to produce biodiesel from date seed oil. The date seed oil is extracted from the date seeds. The date seed is mixed with methanol in 1:3 ratio in presence of catalyst. The mixture was kept in a hot air oven at 55 -60 degrees centigrade for six hours. The Trans esterification process produced a glycerol and methyl ester which is the biodiesel. The glycerol settled down due to its high-density and the upper layer was biodiesel (methyl ester) due to less density. The mixture was separated using a separating funnel. The biodiesel was purified by recovering methanol by using rotary evaporator. The biodiesel produced from date seed oil is analyzed for the viscosity, density, the calorific value was also obtained, and the Flash and Fire point was performed, determine the functional elements of biodiesel using Gas Chromatography. It was observed by gas chromatography analysis that the produced biodiesel contains nearly 70% of methyl ester which is a main component of biodiesel. The density of produced biodiesel was 0.895 g/cm3.The standard biodiesel density is 0.85 g/cm3. The results were compared with standard biodiesel values. Also, the produced biodiesel has been compared with the quality of standard biodiesel. The project yielded better results. Keywords: biodiesel, date seed oil, flash point, Trans- esterification.