Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Production and characterization of biodiesel from Ricinus communis seeds.

Abstract

Biodiesel production from Ricinus communis seeds is one of the options being considered for partially substituting diesel fuel. Diesel chemically is monoalkyl esters of long chain fatty acids from renewable feedstock like vegetable oil, animal fats etc. the oil from the seed was extracted n-hexane as solvent and then transesterified with methanol as choice alcohol and potassium hydroxide (KOH) as the catalyst option. 123.2 ml of biodiesel was realized from 913 g of Ricinus communis seeds to 78.6 ml of glycerol after separation. Properties like pH, free fatty acid (FFA), cloud point, flash point, pour point, specific gravity, viscosity, refractive index, colour, acid value, iodine value, saponification value, peroxide value were checked during the characterization of the produced biodiesel. The flash point and other physico-chemical properties of the produced biodiesel are within the range of American Society for Testing of Materials. Biodiesel standard specification indicated that it can be used in any diesel engine. Based on the characteristics, the produced biodiesel is biodegradable and environmentally friendly than fossil diesel. It is recommended that biodiesel be used as an alternative to fossil diesel.