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Biodiesel 101


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What It Is and How It Is Made
Learn the basics of biodiesel including biodiesel markets and benefits, production technologies, quality control, distribution and storage issues. A replay of the actual lecture can be found at:

Published in: Education, Technology, Business

Biodiesel 101

  1. 1. Biodiesel 101 Presented by Randy Durren 11/02/2010 Biodiesel Handling and Use Guide To view a recording of the presentation please visit our site at:
  2. 2. Contents of Lecture a) Petroluem and Peak Oil b) Terms and definitions related to biodiesel c) Advantages and disadvantages of biodiesel d) Chemistry of biodiesel e) Biodiesel feedstocks f) Current state & future potential of biodiesel
  3. 3. History of Oil Dinosaurs? Where do we find it today? What are the global implications of peak oil? An understanding of the past, present, and future states of petroleum is essential to appreciating the importance of biofuels.
  4. 4. Extreme Global Warming gave excessive Algal Growths Organic debris 90 & 150 million years ago Rifts formed as the Continents moved apart Source: Campbell, May 2005
  5. 5. Chemical reactions converted organic debris into oil when buried & heated Rifts filled by sediment washed in from borderlands And then came the rains Source: Campbell, May 2005
  6. 6. Discoveries, Production, & Demand of Petroleum
  7. 7. New find in GOM (Jack No. 2 test well) • Up to 3-15 billion barrels of oil • US consumption 20 million barrels/day • 5 months - 2 years • Reservoir is 8 km under sea level
  8. 8. Non-convenional reserves (excluding gas and coal) Produced (gone) Proved Reserves Undiscovered(?) EOR Extra Heavy Oil & Tar Sands Shale Oil 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Trillions of Barrels Recoverable Years Supply at 2005 Production Unconventional petroleum resources: (more difficult & dirty, and therefore expen$ive) Conventional (“easy”) 0 25 50 (Courtesy of Joe Stefani)
  9. 9. Non-conventional oil from National Geographic, June 2004 Tar Sand Heavy Oil Oil shale 2 tons of tar sands produce 1 barrel of bitumen (~asphalt)
  10. 10. Location of Oil Reserves
  11. 11. Global Consumption of Oil
  12. 12. The Greenhouse Effect
  13. 13. Making the Case for Renewable Energy Global Petroleum Consumption Annual: 1.26 trillion gallons Daily: 3 billion gallons Hourly: 130 million gallons Health Effects • Diesel exhaust has over 40 constituents that are listed as hazardous air pollutants, toxic air contaminants, carcinogens, mutagens, or reproductive toxicants. Economic Boost • The US trade deficit for petroleum in 2004 was $100 billion. According to US Dept of Labor, every $1 billion in trade deficit is the equivalent of 27,000 lost jobs. Energy Independence • On average, 10% of a farm’s land can provide enough energy to power the entire farm • What else?
  14. 14. Clarification of Terms • Biofuel – a solid, liquid, or gas fuel derived from, or consisting of biological material. • Biodiesel - a fuel comprised of mono-alkyl esters of long chain fatty acids derived from vegetable oils or animal fats, meeting American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) 6751, designated B100. • Ethanol - an alcohol obtained from the fermentation of sugars and starches or chemical synthesis. • Biodiesel Blend – biodiesel (B100) blended with petroleum-based diesel fuel designated BXX, where XX is the volume percent biodiesel.
  15. 15. What is Biodiesel? • Biodiesel a fuel produced to an ASTM standard that can be used as an additive, supplement, or substitute for diesel fuel and heating oil. • Biodiesel is made from vegetable oil or animal fats. (Biodiesel is not vegetable oil.) • Biodiesel is recognized as a fuel by the US Dept. of Energy, US Dept. of Transportation, and US Environmental Protection Agency.
  16. 16. Biodiesel: What isn’t it ? • Non-esterified oils and fats • Raw vegetable oils and animal fats are not biodiesel!! • Non-esterified oils and fats blended with petroleum-diesel • Partially esterified oils and fats • This fuel will not meet ASTM standards • A blend of biodiesel and petroleum diesel • Renewable Diesel
  17. 17. Applications of Biodiesel • As a neat fuel (B100). • 100% biodiesel qualifies as an alternative fuel under EPAct for fleet alternatively fueled vehicle mandates. • As a medium-level blend (B20-B50). • Most commonly used blends of biodiesel • Used by private and public fleets throughout the world • As a low-level blend (1% - 5%). Small amounts of biodiesel can restore lubricity to low-sulfur fuels. • 2% biodiesel blend can replace all lubricity lost from using ULSD • 5% biodiesel blend is most commonly supported by OEM manufacturers • Bioheat • Biodiesel can be used as supplement for home heating oil
  18. 18. Advantages of Biodiesel Biodegradable, nontoxic, renewable High flash point (300°F or higher) Very favorable energy balance, 3.2 to 1. Lower emissions than petroleum diesel Locally produced biodiesel supports the local economy The use of biodiesel made in the US decreases the dependence for petroleum from other nations.
  19. 19. Biodiesel is Nontoxic • Biodiesel is the only alternative fuel to pass EPA health effects testing. • Studies show it is 10 times less toxic than table salt. • Cancer risks associated with diesel exhaust are reduced 94% with biodiesel.
  20. 20. Biodiesel is Easy to Use • Biodiesel works in any diesel engine or oil burner. • Biodiesel uses existing fueling infrastructure. • Biodiesel is available for delivery anywhere in the country. • It is as easy to “get out of” as it is to “get in to”.
  21. 21. Things to be aware of… Biodiesel gels and freezes at higher temperatures than diesel Biodiesel acts as solvent in tanks and lines Biodiesel is a solvency on some surfaces Biodiesel can be incompatible with some hoses, seals, & gaskets Biodiesel may be reactive with brass and copper Shelf Life of Biodiesel
  22. 22. Disadvantages of Biodiesel • Biodiesel has a lower energy content than diesel fuel: – Biodiesel has 12.5% less energy than diesel per pound. However, biodiesel is slightly heavier than diesel, so when measured by volume biodiesel contains 8% less energy. – Improved combustion (higher cetane number) and superior lubricity of biodiesel make up for loss in energy content. – Driver will not notice any power or mileage loss due to use of biodiesel. Btu/lb Btu/gal • #2 Diesel 18,300 129,050 • Biodiesel 16,000 118,170 (12.5% less (8% less)
  23. 23. Disadvantages of Biodiesel • Some biodiesel may begin to cloud and gel at temperatures as high as 60°F. • Biodiesel is less oxidatively stable than petroleum diesel fuel. Old fuel can become acidic and form sediments and varnish. Additives can prevent this. • There is limited supply. Plant oils are widely available but expensive. Inedible animal fats are less expensive but have limited supply.
  24. 24. History of Diesel Engines • 1900 – Dr. Rudolph Diesel demonstrated his engine using peanut oil at the World’s Fair. • The diesel engine utilized high compression for ignition. • Original diesel engines were capable of burning wide variety of fuels, including vegetable oils. “The use of plant oil as fuel may seem insignificant today. But such products can in time become just as important as today’s kerosene and coal-tar-products” -Rudolph Diesel
  25. 25. Engine Warranties Use of biodiesel in your vehicle will not void your warranty! • The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act is a federal law protecting consumers from deceptive warranty practices. • Many engine manufacturers have stated recommendations of biodiesel blends for use in their engines. More details on biodiesel and engine warranties can be found on the National Biodiesel Board website.
  26. 26. Biodiesel Emissions Regulated B100 B20 Total Unburned Hydro Carbons -93% -30% Carbon Monoxide -50% -20% Particulate Matter -30% -22% Nox (in vehicles – reductions in boilers/burners!) +13% +2% Non Regulated Sulfates -100% -20% PAH (Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons) -80% -13% nPah (nitrated PAH) -90% -50% Ozone Potential of speciated HC -50% -10% Mutagenicity -80%-90% -20% • Overall greenhouse gas emissions from biodiesel are reduced by 40% compared to petroleum diesel.  Biodiesel is the first and only alternative fuel to have a complete evaluation of emissions results and potential health effects submitted to the US EPA under the Clean Air Act 211 (b) Both Tier I and Tier II have been completed
  27. 27. The Biodiesel Reaction • Produced by a chemical reaction between alcohol and an oil or fat facilitated by a catalyst. Plant oil (100 lbs) + methanol (10lbs)  Biodiesel (100lbs) + glycerin (10 lbs) • This process is called transesterification
  28. 28. List of Raw Materials • Oil or Fat  Soy  Canola  Cottonseed  Poultry Fat  Beef Tallow  Pork Lard  Restaurant Grease • Alcohol  Methanol  Ethanol  Isopropanol  Butanol • Catalyst  Sodium Hydroxide  Potassium Hydroxide
  29. 29. Transesterification A “free fatty acid” (FFA) chain that has broken off the “fat” molecule Steam from cooking foods, salts, chemicals, and heat break chains off triglycerides to produce FFAs Vegetable oil molecule (Triglyceride) FFA combines with alcohol molecule to make an alkyl ester (Biodiesel)
  30. 30. Transesterification Fatty Acid Chains Glycerol Methanol One triglyceride molecule is converted into three mono-alkyl-ester (biodiesel) molecules Biodiesel Triglyceride Catalyst
  31. 31. Transesterification Material Balance Oil or FatCatalyst Methanol Acidulation Acid Methanol Removal Water Glycerine Esters FFA Methanol Removal Waste Water Excess Methanol 50 > 99% Crude Glycerin Biodiesel Washing Reaction and Separation Methoxide
  32. 32. Micro-production aka “Home brewing” To learn more about micro-production of biodiesel please refer to the following links. • • Biodiesel discussion forums • • Home of the collaborative biodiesel tutorial • • Biodiesel blogs, discussion groups, production equipment sales • • Website dedicated to those who love Volkswagen TDIs • • Tutorials, “appleseed” reactor kits, production equipment, books • • Education, consulting, free tours of facility every Sunday • • Free online video tutorials and lots more
  33. 33. First Generation Biofuels • Uses high value feedstocks which lead to the food vs. fuel discussion • Require large land investments • Utilizing inefficient production methods • Generally do not accomplish perceived goals
  34. 34. Comparing Potential Oil Yields from different crops Crop Oil Yield Gallons/acre Corn 18 Cotton 35 Soybean 48 Mustard seed 61 Sunflower 102 Rapeseed 127 Jatropha 202 Oil palm 635 Algae “10,000” Source:
  35. 35. Potential of Fats & Oils Vegetable Oil Production (Billion pounds/yr) Soybean 18.34 Peanuts 0.22 Sunflower 1.00 Cottonseed 1.01 Corn 2.42 Others 0.67 Total Veg. Oil 23.66 Animal Fats (Billion pounds/yr) Edible Tallow 1.63 Inedible tallow 3.86 Lard & Grease 1.31 Yellow Grease 2.63 Poultry Fat 2.21 Total Animal Fat 11.64 35.3 billion lbs of fats and oils could produce about 4.6 billion gallons of biodiesel. Combined Total: 23.66 + 11.64 = 35.3 billion lbs/yr
  36. 36. On-highway Diesel (billion gallons) 1998 30.15 1999 32.06 2000 33.13 2001 33.22 2002 34.31 2003 37.10 2004 37.02 2005 38.05 Sales of On-highway Diesel Fuel If all of the vegetable oil and animal fat were used to produce biodiesel, we could only replace about 15% of the current demand for on-highway diesel fuel. Sales of On-highway Diesel Fuel Energy Information Administration Total Annual Production of US Fats and Oils. from Pearl, G.G., "Animal Fat Potential for Bioenergy Use," 2002
  37. 37. Next Generation Biofuels Changes must take place in the biodiesel industry in order for biofuels to have a more positive global impact. • The use of low food value, high yielding crops is imperative to the growth and success of the industry. • Advancements in production technology must also occur. Highly efficient production methods are vital to competing with the much larger petroleum industry. • Stringent quality control standards must be upheld to provide consumers with confidence in the biodiesel they are purchasing.
  38. 38. Sustainable Biodiesel Sustainable - meeting the needs of today without compromising the needs of future generations. • Although biodiesel is produced largely from renewable resources, it is not always produced sustainably. • Environmental stewardship, social impacts, and fiscal responsibility are all key factors in creating sustainable fuel from a renewable resource. Without these components, biofuels is just as non-renewable as petroleum. o Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance o Organization committed to making sustainable biodiesel an industry standard o Sustainable Biodiesel Summit o An annual event held to support the sustainable biodiesel industry and to educate about the importance of sustainability in the entire biodiesel industry. o National Biodiesel Board Sustainability Task Force
  39. 39. Biodiesel Quality ASTM D 6751 Standards • Fuel quality is critical for proper functioning • Standards ensure satisfactory operation in diesel engines BQ 9000 Certification • Certifies biodiesel producers and marketers • Provides confidence in biodiesel quality for: – Biodiesel Producers – Engine and Vehicle Manufacturers – Distributors – Consumers
  40. 40. Biodiesel Standard ASTM D 6751 Property Test method Limits Units Flash point (closed cup) D 93 93.0 min oC Water and sediment D 2709 0.050 max % volume Sulfated ash D 874 0.020 max % mass Sulfur D5453 0.05 or 0.0015 max a % mass Cloud point D 2500 Report oC Acid number D 664 0.50 max mg KOH / g Free glycerin D 6584 0.020 % mass Total glycerin D 6584 0.240 % mass Oxidation Stability EN 14112 3 min hours Workmanship Free of undissolved water, sediment, & suspended matter Carbon residue D 4530 0.050 max % mass Kinematic viscosity, 40 oC D 445 1.9-6.0 mm2 / s Copper strip corrosion D 130 No. 3 max Phosphorus content D 4951 0.001 max % mass Distillation temperature,T90 AET D 1160 360 max oC Sodium/Potassium, combined EN 14538 5 max, combined ppm Cetane number D 613 47 min Calcium & Magnesium EN 14538 5 max ppm (ug/g) Tests in bold type are considered to be critical testing parameters for biodiesel. a) The limits are for Grade S15 and Grade S500 biodiesel, respectively. S15 and S500 refer to maximum sulfur specifications (in ppm).
  41. 41. Certificate of Analysis • Provides consumers with the assurance that the fuel they are purchasing meets ASTM standards set for biodiesel. • Should clearly state each test performed on fuel being sold by producer. • Failure of any quality control test should prevent the sale of fuel for on- road use.
  42. 42. What Can I Do? • Drive Less – Consolidate shopping trips/days – Carpool – HOV lanes rock! – Live close to work • Eat “Closer to Home” – Farmers Markets, CSA…use less petroleum and support the local economy at the same time – Diet choices have significant impact on oil use • Make your next vehicle a more fuel efficient one – A more efficient vehicle = Lower fuel costs • Conserve energy at home - Painlessly – CF lights – Turn your hot water heater down – Turn off lights/appliances when not in use • Support Renewable Fuels
  43. 43. Conservation It’s important to remember that while biodiesel may be a better option than petroleum diesel; the use of less natural resources is ultimately the only answer to the problem of peak oil, climate change, unsustainable fuel production, etc. As the global human population increases, the demand for all natural resources will rise also. Conservation, efficiency, and appropriate technology are all necessary for our society to continue enjoying the quality of life we have come to know in North Carolina. The only thing better than burning biodiesel is not burning fuel at all.
  44. 44. Summary • Biodiesel is an alternative fuel for diesel engines that can be produced from renewable materials. • Biodiesel can be used in any diesel engine with modification. • Biodiesel’s advantages include emissions, farmer support, ease & safety of use, and higher lubricity . • Biodiesel’s disadvantages include difficultly in cold weather and slightly lower energy content than diesel. • The health effects of biodiesel use are superior to those from diesel exhaust. • Biodiesel has the potential to have a dramatic impact creating jobs and supporting local fuel production.