Production of Biodiesel from Jatropha Curcas by Microwave Irradiation

- Biodiesel is an potential fuel for diesel
engine and is in demand nowdays due to several
factors including price stability, limited reserve of
carbon fuel, and environmental issue. Jatropha is one
of the potential feedstock for biodiesel production
due to its high oil content (about 40 – 65 %). It is
nonedible, therefore it will not compete with food for
fuel. In this study, transesterification process is
chosen to transform Jatropha crude oil to fatty acid
methyl ester (FAME) or biodiesel. The
transesterification was carried out using microwave
irradiation with homogenous catalyst. Effects of
various parameters such as catalyst ratio of (2-4%)
NaOH, reaction time (3-9 minutes) and solvent
molarity ratio (1:16, 24 and 30) on conversion have
been studied. The FAME conversion was determined
using gas chromatography following the ASTM D
6584 method. Compare with the conventional heating
method, the process using microwaves irradiation has
effectively shortened the reaction time. The optimum
FAME production conversion is 86.3%.
Keyword : Jatropha curcas, Microwave irradiation,
Fatty Acid Methyl Ester (FAME), Transesterification

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