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  See discussions, stats, and author profiles for this publication at: Application of Ultrasound for Synthesis of Biodiesel  Article  · January 2015 CITATIONS 0 READS 586 5 authors , including: Some of the authors of this publication are also working on these related projects: PREHEAT NETWORK RECONFIGURATION OF A KERO HYDRO DESULPHURIZATION UNIT”   View projectDesign of Three Phase separator View projectNiraj TopareMaharashtra Institute of Technology 41   PUBLICATIONS   96   CITATIONS   SEE PROFILE Dr.Kiran D. PatilMaharashtra Institute of Technology 58   PUBLICATIONS   58   CITATIONS   SEE PROFILE Parikshit NaikAston University 5   PUBLICATIONS   0   CITATIONS   SEE PROFILE Mr. Akash Vitthal SonawaneMaharashtra Institute of Technology 4   PUBLICATIONS   0   CITATIONS   SEE PROFILE All content following this page was uploaded by Niraj Topare on 24 February 2015. The user has requested enhancement of the downloaded file.     ETCE (2015) 1-8 © STM Journals 2015. All Rights Reserved Page 1   Emerging Trends in Chemical Engineering ISSN: 2349-4786(online) Volume 2, Issue 1 Application of Ultrasound for Synthesis of Biodiesel Niraj S. Topare *  , Kiran D. Patil, Parikshit Naik, Akash Sonawane, Pratik Joshi    Department of Petroleum and Petrochemical Engineering, MAEER’S Maharashtra Institute of Technology, Pune -411038, India  Abstract The aim of study is to synthesize a biodiesel from soybean oil using ultrasonic process. At  present, biodiesel is produced in batch reactors in which the required energy is provided by heating by mechanical mixing. Alternatively, ultrasonic processing is an effective way to attain required mixing providing the necessary activation energy. Ultrasonic is a very desirable tool for producing biodiesel from vegetable oil and animal fats, because it lowers the cost of processing, speeds up transesterification, does not require elevated temperatures, and produces a higher grade of biodiesel. The aspect considered in the research work is to develop and design a methodology for ultrasonic process. Hence, our main aim is to study the effect of ultrasonic irradiation on the production of biodiesel from soyabean oil with homogeneous catalysts (KOH). Different operational parameters affecting the biodiesel yield, including methanol/oil molar ratio, catalyst type and concentration, reaction time, and ultrasound pulsation rate were evaluated. Keywords:  Biodiesel, transesterification, ultrasound process, homogeneous catalysts, cavitation *  Author for Correspondence   E-mail:, INTRODUCTION With the depleting oil reserves and worldwide fuel crisis, the world is shifting towards  biofuels, biodiesel being the major biofuel. Biodiesel can be easily produced from various feedstocks and involves a basic reaction called the transesterification reaction [1]. The reaction takes place in the presence of an alcohol and a catalyst, the alcohol preferred is Methanol or Ethanol, various kinds of homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysts can  be used. It is a simple production process and its various advantages compared to gasoline and diesel makes it the top most choice for alternative fuel [2]. The production of biodiesel requires basic utilities like stirring and heating which makes it a very easy process. Research and studies came up with an alternative and intensified  process to produce biodiesel using ultrasound [3]. Audible range for human hearing is approximately 20 kHz, or 20,000 cycles per second, which is lesser than the frequency  produced by ultrasound. The process involves transfer of energy in the reaction mixture using ultrasound waves which tend to create cavitation bubbles in the mixture and provide intense mixing. Such a huge energy action in the liquid can considerably increase the reactivity of the reactant mixture and shorten the reaction time without involving temperatures [3, 4]. Ultrasound is defined by its intensity (Watt/cm 2 ) as well as by its frequency (kHz) [5]. A higher frequency causes the ultrasound  probe to vibrate faster, resulting in a larger surface area for mixing the alcohol, triglycerides and a smaller cavitation bubbles [6]. Ultrasound process proves to be efficient in terms of many factors like requirement of alcohol and catalyst, reaction time, and yield [7]. Results obtained from the experiments carried out to produce biodiesel using ultrasound clearly signifies that ultrasound is an efficient and intensified medium for the  production of biodiesel in shorter times with higher yields. MATERIALS AND METHODS Systems Required Ultrasonic Reactor In biodiesel production, vigorous mixing is required to create sufficient contact between the oil and alcohol; especially at the beginning  Ultrasound for Synthesis of Biodiesel Topare et al.  ETCE (2015) 1-8 © STM Journals 2015. All Rights Reserved Page 2   of the reaction. Ultrasound is a useful tool to mix liquids that tend to separate. Design specifications of ultrasonic reactor are given in Table 1. Ultrasonic waves cause intense mixing at microlevels and improve mass transfer greatly, so that the reaction can  proceed at a much faster rate. Although not currently in wide use, ultrasound is a  promising technology for biodiesel production. Table 2 represents the design and operating  parameters for each element/part of ultrasonic reactor. Ultrasound processing results in similar yields of biodiesel with a much shortened reaction time compared to the conventional stirred-tank procedure. Ultrasonic reactors can process triglycerides into biodiesel within minutes. In addition, current users of the technology claim that much less catalyst and methanol are required. Ultrasonic processing can be used successfully with a wide variety of feedstock, including high free fatty acid feedstock. Table 1:  Design Specifications of an Ultrasonic Reactor. Diameter 150 mm (ID) Vessel design length, tangent to tangent 2 mm Thickness 3 mm Distance of bottom tangent above grade 5 mm Distance of base above grade 5 mm Specified datum line distance 185 mm Shell material specification SA-240 316L Internal design temperature 100 °C Internal design pressure 131.22 kpa External design temperature 50 °C External design pressure 101.325 kpa Maximum allowable working pressure 116.2 kpa External max. allowable working pressure 1076.7 kpa Table 2:  Design and Operating Parameters for Each Element/Part of an Ultrasonic Reactor. Element/part description Design press. + static head External pressure MAWP Corrosion allowance Bottom dish 1.000 1.034 21.265 0.5000 Shell 1.000 1.034 37.441 0.5000 Flange 1 1.000 1.034 1.162 0.5000 Flange 2 1.000 1.034 1.162 0.5000 Top dish 1.000 1.034 38.218 0.5000 Ultrasonic Processor    Ultrasonic processor is primarily meant for liquid processing [7]. The ultrasonic liquid  processor consists of three major components (1) Ultrasonic generator, (2) Converter (transducer) and (3) Probe (horn). Ultrasonic generator gets input 230 V, 50 Hz and converts it into electrical frequency 20 kHz. It also consists of PLC which controls ultrasonic cycles [8]. The electrical signal is then given to ultrasonic transducer which converts it into mechanical vibration, which is further given to ultrasonic probe; a replaceable tip is mounted on ultrasonic probe [9]. The probe is made up of titanium, having diameter 10 mm and length 250 mm. Figure 1 shows the ultrasonic  processor. Experimental Setup The basic setup consists of a 1.5 L reactor in which the ultrasound probe is immersed. The reactor has an inlet for the feed and an outlet for the product. The probe having a frequency of 20 kHz is connected to the transducer which in turn is controlled by the ultrasound generator. A thermocouple is inserted into the reactor to measure the inside temperature which is displayed on the generator. An overhead condenser is provided to the reactor to condense back methanol vapors formed, if any [10]. All the parameters like reaction time, temperature, pulse rate, amplitude can be set on the generator. The whole setup is kept inside a wooden box that acts as a sound shield. Figures 2 and 3 represent the schematic and actual experiment setup for biodiesel production. Methodology  Material Selection and Pre-treatment The soybean oil to be used is checked for its FFA content. Methanol is taken depending on the molar ratio with respect to the oil which is 1:3. KOH is taken as 1 to 3% of the total volume to be fed. The alcohol and the catalyst are mixed well to create a mixture which will  be fed along with the oil.   Emerging Trends in Chemical Engineering Volume 2, Issue 1  ISSN: 2349-4786(online)  ETCE (2015) 1-8 © STM Journals 2015. All Rights Reserved Page 3   Fig. 1:  Ultrasonic Processor (Ultrasonic Liquid Processor). Fig. 2:  Schematic Representation of Experimental Setup.


May 2, 2019
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