Commenced in January 2007
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Optimization of the Production Processes of Biodiesel from a Locally Sourced Gossypium herbaceum and Moringa oleifera

Authors: Ikechukwu Ejim

Abstract:

This research project addresses the optimization of biodiesel production from gossypium herbaceum (cottonseed) and moringa oleifera seeds. Soxhlet extractor method using n-hexane for gossypium herbaceum (cottonseed) and ethanol for moringa oleifera were used for solvent extraction. 1250 ml of oil was realized from both gossypium herbaceum (cottonseed) and moringa oleifera seeds before characterization. In transesterification process, a 4-factor-3-level experiment was conducted using an optimal design of Response Surface Methodology. The effects of methanol/oil molar ratio, catalyst concentration (%), temperature (°C) and time (mins), on the yield of methyl ester for both cottonseed and moringa oleifera oils were determined. The design consisted of 25 experimental runs (5 lack of fit points, five replicate points, 0 additional center points and I optimality) and provided sufficient information to fit a second-degree polynomial model. The experimental results suggested that optimum conditions were as follows; cottonseed yield (96.231%), catalyst concentration (0.972%), temperature (55oC), time (60mins) and methanol/oil molar ratios (8/1) respectively while moringa oleifera optimum values were yield (80.811%), catalyst concentration (1.0%), temperature (54.7oC), time (30mins ) and methanol/oil molar ratios (8/1) respectively. This optimized conditions were validated with the actual biodiesel yield in experimental trials and literature.

Keywords: Optimization, Biodiesel, Moringa oleifera, Gossypium herbaceum

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