Direct conversion of wet algae to crude biodiesel under supercritical ethanol conditions

Harvind K. Reddy, Tapaswy Muppaneni, Prafulla D. Patil, Sundaravadivelnathan Ponnusamy, Peter Cooke, Tanner Schaub, Shuguang Deng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

107 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper presents a single-step, environmentally friendly approach for the direct conversion of wet algae to crude biodiesel under supercritical ethanol conditions. Ethanol was used for the simultaneous extraction and transesterification of lipids in algae to produce fatty acid ethyl esters at supercritical conditions. In this work the effects of process parameters dry algae to ethanol (wt./vol.) ratio (1:6-1:15), reaction temperature (245-270 C), and reaction time (2-30 min.) on the yield of fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEE) were studied. 67% conversion was achieved at 265 C and 20 min of reaction time. The calorific value of a purified biodiesel sample produced at optimum conditions was measured to be 43 MJ/kg, which is higher than that of fatty acid methyl esters produced from the same biomass. The purified fatty acid ethyl esters were analyzed using GC-MS and FTIR. TGA analysis of algal biomass and purified FAEE was presented along with TEM images of the biomass captured before and after supercritical ethanol transesterification. This green conversion process has the potential to provide an energy-efficient and economical route for the production of renewable biodiesel production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)720-726
Number of pages7
JournalFuel
Volume115
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Keywords

  • Biodiesel
  • Fatty acid ethyl ester
  • Single-step conversion
  • Supercritical ethanol
  • Wet algae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Organic Chemistry

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  • Cite this

    Reddy, H. K., Muppaneni, T., Patil, P. D., Ponnusamy, S., Cooke, P., Schaub, T., & Deng, S. (2014). Direct conversion of wet algae to crude biodiesel under supercritical ethanol conditions. Fuel, 115, 720-726. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fuel.2013.07.090