Biodiesel production in a jet flow stirred reactor

Reyes J. F., Malverde P. E., Melín P. S., De Bruijn J. P.

Keywords: kinetics, biodiesel, transesterification


The rate of biodiesel formation was assessed in a transesterification reactor stirred with a dual jet flow close loop. A blend of 85% of soybean and 15% of sunflower oil, methanol and NaOH were used to study the rate of conversion from vegetable oil to methyl esters. A 9 l cylindrical reactor with conical bottom discharge connected to two centrifugal pumps for fluid recirculation through dual opposite radial jet flows in its upper part was developed for the experiment. The system did not require a heating supply due that the frictional effect inside the recirculation hoses and nozzles produced self heating of the inlet fluid to the reactor. Four different diameters of ejector corresponding to initial Reynolds Number (Re) ranging between 1300 and 6470 were tested to assess the reactor heating profile along with the kinetics of biodiesel formation. Clear performance differences among ejector diameters and Reynolds Number values were observed showing that higher Re result in low relative conversion times along with higher final temperature in the reactor. For 98% of relative conversion to biodiesel, the ejector with Re = 6470 showed 88% reduction in transesterification time with respect to an ejector delivering a Re = 1300 and without requiring any external heat source.

Más información

Título de la Revista: FUEL
Volumen: 89
Fecha de publicación: 2010
Página de inicio: 3093
Página final: 3098