Optimal Design of Biodiesel Production Process from Waste Cooking Palm Oil

Lida Simasatitkul, Rafiqul Gani, Amornchai Arpornwichanop, Dr Petr Kluson

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A design methodology for biodiesel production from waste cooking palm oil is proposed. The proposed method is flexible to the biodiesel process using various catalyst types: alkali and acid catalyst in homogenous and heterogeneous forms, and different process: enzyme process and supercritical process. A two-step approach of hydrolysis and esterification processes is also considered. Waste cooking palm oil consists of a mixture of triglyceride (e.g., trilaurin, tripalmitin, triolein, tristearin, trilinolein and trilinolenin) and free fatty acids (e.g., lauric acid, palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, linoleic and linolenic acid). A driving force approach and thermodynamic insight are employed to design separation units (e.g., flash separator and distillation) minimizing the energy consumption. Steady-state simulations of the developed biodiesel processes are performed and economic analysis is used to find a suitable biodiesel process. The results show that based on a net present value, the heterogeneous acid catalyzed process is the best process for biodiesel production. With the design methodology, the proposed biodiesel process can save the energy requirement of 41.5%, compared with a conventional process.
Original languageEnglish
JournalProcedia Engineering
Pages (from-to)1292-1301
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventCHISA 2012: 20th International Congress of Chemical and Process Engineering - Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 25 Aug 201229 Aug 2012


ConferenceCHISA 2012
CountryCzech Republic


  • Process design
  • biodiesel production
  • waste cooking palm oil
  • superstructure

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