Biodiesel Production from Waste Cooking Palm Oil and Environmental Impact Analysis

University of Malaya, Institute of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Kuala Lumpur-50603, Malaysia


SAIFUDDIN, M., P. E. GOH, W. S. HO, K. M. MONERUZZAMAN and A. NASRULHAQ-BOYCE, 2014. Biodiesel production from waste cooking palm oil and environmental impact analysis. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 20: 186-192


The inevitability of oil depletion, global warming and the greenhouse effects has put the world on an alarming condition. It needs more than ever before to search for alternative forms of energy and this includes biodiesel, which is an environmentally friendly form of alternative energy compared to petrodiesel. The present study was carried out to investigate biodiesel production via alkaline transesterification using waste palm cooking oil and its chemical characteristics compared to conventional biodiesel. The highest yield of biodiesel was produced using a temperature of 55°C with methanol to oil molar ratio of 6:1 and at a catalyst (KOH ) concentration of 1.0%. The quality of the biodiesel produced was evaluated by the determinations of important properties, such as kinematics viscosity, total acid number (TAN ), total base number (TBN ) and ash content. The biodiesel produced was found to contain a low base number and undetected acid level but had a higher ash content and Ca, Mg and Na levels. Its kinematic viscosity and phosphorus level were found within the limits prescribed by the latest American Standards for Testing Material (ASTM). In the engine tests, the emissions of unburned hydrocarbons, oxides of nitrogen and carbon monoxide using biodiesel fuel were lower than that using conventional diesel fuel although the biodiesel fuel exhibited a higher specific fuel consumption compared to the diesel fuel. It can be concluded that biodiesel made from waste palm oil can be considered as a great potential source of commercial biodiesel. Emission tests showed that the level of unburned hydrocarbons, oxides of nitrogen and carbon monoxide were lower than conventional diesel fuel.

Key words: biodiesel; palm oil; alkaline transesterification, optimization, emission

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