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Biodiesel from animal fat


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I am trying to make biodiesel from animal fat. The basis prosess involves the following.

Collecting the fat from the abbetoir.

Heating to remove the water and solids.

Treating with 1% sulfuric acid to reduse the FFA 's

Reacting it with sodium metoxside.

Normal washing and drying.


The acid stage reaction is wery slow at 70 'C .

Did anybody try the reaction at higher temp and pressure.

I see you can use a tipe of risin to speed up the reaction.

Do anybody have any experience with it.

Can somebody tell me anything about the economics of the process.

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OK, animal fat (mostly C18) can be treated as plant fat when regarding the synthesis of methyl-biodiesel (methylstearate, etc.).


1. The fat should be rendered (melted) away from the water and protein (which you have there).

2. Why use H2SO4 (catalyst) to hydrolize ( not reduce) the triacylglycerides into glycerol and 3 equivalents of fatty acid when a direct transesterification with methanol would suffice?

2a. prepare a small amount of sodium methoxide (NaOMe). Add this to the methanol (which you have not referred to). This is reacted with the rendered fat directly.


3. Resins (sulfonated styrene-DVB) might be used for acid catalyzed esterification (which is two step, involving first, hydrolysis).


4. Experience? yes.


5. Economics are limited by the source of oil (a full 747 aircraft fueled with 20 % BD will cost ~ 80,000 USD in soybeans alone) energy expended in operation and value-added. Value-added will likely arise from the huge amount of glycerol which will be made when the process is carried out at industrial scale (for every 10 gallons of BD expect ~ 1 gallon or nasty, worthless crude glycerol).





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Less waste! Value-added for the CO2 spewing Cows of the Apocalypse!


If anything, it should be viewed as a model of efficiency.


Hamburgers and fuel, oh my!


IIRC, they have been rendering turkey offal for sometime (in conjunction with a Butterball processing facility). The product was a "carboxylic oil" which could, no doubt, be esterified to yield a Greasle. I am not so sure, however, how close I would like to live to such a facility.


To hell with tofurkey!





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  • 1 month later...

Haha, yes I once entertained the question "how many bunny rabbits would I have to kill to get a gallon of deisel" I cant remember the answer... it wasent all that many... Energy problems solved!>:D


Oh crap I went out on the deck and had a smoke... I realized a few things. The protien/fat ratio is important (fat is king) but I recall the engineerd bacteria most of you are familiar with can make the magic happen with protien aswell right? recently I did some reading on earthworms, and how virialant and populos it can be beneath our feet.... for the good chemists out there, How many pounds of earthworms to a gallon of diesel? I guess dried out earthworms are nothing :(

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The whole reason biodeisel is so popular is that you are using what was once waste and turning it into something useful. Biodeisel is made from what's leftover of what you are processing. With regular petrol based compounds, the fuel isn't the result of a waste product. It's what you process the stuff for in the first place. So regardless of the energy cost in terms of making the stuff, the fact that you are also getting a bunch of other items in the process makes it worthwhile.

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