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  Din Wan Yussof

Postgraduate Student

Novel Heterogeneous Catalysts for Biodiesel Production


Biodiesel can be produced by transesterification of vegetable oils or animal fats with an alcohol, especially lower alcohols such as methanol and ethanol in the present of catalyst. Most commercial biodiesel industries use homogenous base catalysts for the transesterification process since it proceeds at a much higher rate and produced higher conversion of biodiesel which is over 95 %. However, these homogenous base catalysts can not be recovered and also necessitates a glycerol neutralisation step.



Conventional Biodiesel Process Using Homogeneous Catalyst


Substitution of liquid homogeneous catalysts with solid heterogeneous catalysts is expected to yield a cleaner product and cheaper production costs due to reuse of the catalyst. In this work, our effort is to develop a new heterogeneous basic catalyst that will be used in the transesterification of rapeseed oil using methanol at 60oC. Our concern is on producing an active, stable and reusable heterogeneous basic catalyst that operates at low temperature which has an appropriate conversion of triglycerides into biodiesel.



Intensified Biodiesel Process Using Heterogeneous Catalyst


Presently, we have been looking into the polymeric adsorbent with the quaternary ammonium functional group. It is expected that this functional group is stable without leaching and the conversion can be improved to above 50 % by increasing the amount of catalyst.


For more information please contact Prof Adam Harvey.




 Last modified: 04-Aug-2017