International Oil & Gas Holdings Corporation (IOGH) recently showcased its proprietary production processes for bio-diesel made from oils and fats. The processes are contained in three basic routes:
- Base catalyzed trans-esterification of the feedstock
- Acid catalyzed trans-esterification and
- Conversion of the feedstock to its fatty acids
The choice of which base catalyst to use is often driven by cost and can have long range effects on the quality of the bio-diesel produced.
The IOGH system uses sodium hydroxide as a catalyst instead of potassium hydroxide to control the chemistry of the end products created during the reaction process. Both sodium hydroxide and potassium hydroxide dissolve in oils and fats, and a small amount of excess catalyst is needed to complete the reaction. The catalyst must then be neutralized at the end of the reaction to prevent carryover into the bio-diesel fuel itself.
Potassium hydroxide dissolves easily in oils and fats faster and stays dissolved longer than sodium hydroxide. However, IOGH researchers maintain that the use of potassium hydroxide can create an excessive ash content in the burned fuel, leading to engine deposits and high abrasive wear on pistons and cylinders.
The IOGH process uses rigorous lab tests to determine quality and to ensure that their choice of catalyst is neutralized into a well-known byproduct -- salt.
For more information, visit the company's website at http://www.ioghc.com.Interested in information related to sustainable manufacturing best practices? Bookmark our Making Green page, and check back daily for updated content.