Comparative Assessment of Biodiesel Produced from Microalgae, Used Vegetable Oil and Fossils


Biodiesel was produced from two sources; microalgae oil and used vegetable oil and compared with conventional fossil diesel. The microalgae were collected from an open pond where they constitute nuisance while the used vegetable oil was gotten from roadside fried food sellers as waste products. Trans-esterification was carried out to give the corresponding mono alkyl ester (biodiesel).  Quality assessment of the biodiesel produced was carried out via determination of chemical characteristics; Density, viscosity, flash point, pour point and acid value. The density of the biodiesel from the two sources were 0.882 kg. L-1 and 0.870 kg. L-1 respectively and higher than the conventional diesel. Flash points of the biodiesel produced from microalgae (1650C) and used vegetable oil (1810C) were significantly higher than the conventional diesel.  Pour points of the biodiesel produced from microalgae oil and used vegetable oil were -100C and -150C respectively while viscosity values at 350C were 5.2 and 4.5 respectively. The acid value of the biodiesel produced from the microalgae oil (0.394) and the used vegetable oil (0.290) were lower than that of the conventional diesel fuel (0.5).  The chemical characteristics of the biodiesel produced were in line with standard specifications.  The biodiesel produced when compared with the conventional diesel fuel based on their different parameters may be fit and greener replacement for fossil diesel fuels, which are nonrenewable and not biodegradable.

Keywords: Biodiesel, Microalgae, Renewable Energy, Waste Management, used vegetable oil

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