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Title: Composition and Physical Properties of Cress (Lepidium sativum L.) and Field Pennycress (Thlaspi arvense L.) Oils

item Moser, Bryan
item Shah, Shailesh
item Moser, Jill
item Vaughn, Steven
item Evangelista, Roque

Submitted to: Industrial Crops and Products
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/24/2009
Publication Date: 5/1/2009
Citation: Moser, B.R., Shah, S.N., Moser, J.K., Vaughn, S.F., Evangelista, R.L. 2009. Composition and Physical Properties of Cress (Lepidium sativum L.) and Field Pennycress (Thlaspi arvense L.) Oils. Industrial Crops and Products. 30:199-205.

Interpretive Summary: This research demonstrated that cress and field pennycress oils, two new vegetable oils, are attractive alternatives to commodity vegetable oils for important industrial applications. Commodity vegetable oils are expensive and have numerous competing food-related applications, whereas cress and field pennycress oils are not part of the food chain and are inexpensive to produce. The objectives of this study were to determine the chemical compositions of these oils and to measure a number of important physical properties in an effort to ascertain their potential as chemical feedstocks for important industrial materials. It was discovered that cress and field pennycress oils in many respects are superior to soybean oil. These results are important to the chemical and biodiesel industries because these new, inexpensive, non-food oils may serve to augment the supply of bio-based starting materials for the production of essential industrial products. This research may ultimately improve market penetration and public perception of domestically produced agricultural materials such as biodiesel, lubricants, surfactants, and greases, thus affording greater national independence from imported petroleum-based products

Technical Abstract: The fatty acid profile and tocopherol, and phytosterol contents of crude cress (Lepidium sativum L.) and field pennycress (Thlaspi arvense L.) oils are reported, along with yields from the corresponding seeds. The physical properties of these oils were also determined, which included oxidative stability, kinematic viscosity, low temperature fluidity, specific gravity, acid value, lubricity, and iodine value. The primary fatty acids found in cress oil were oleic (30.6 wt %) and linolenic acids (29.3 wt %), whereas field pennycress oil was principally composed of erucic acid (32.8 wt %), with linoleic acid (22.4 wt %) also present in significant quantity. Cress oil contained high concentrations of gamma- (1422 ppm) and omega-(356 ppm) tocopherols, whereas alpha-tocopherol (714 ppm) was the primary tocopherol discovered in field pennycress oil. The overall tocopherol concentrations of cress and field pennycress oils was 1799 and 851 ppm, respectively. The primary phytosterols elucidated in cress and field pennycress oils were sitosterol and campesterol, with avenasterol also present in significant quantity in cress oil. The overall phytosterol content of cress oil (14.41 mg/g) was greater than that for field pennycress (8.55 mg/g) oil. Field pennycress oil exhibited superior low temperature fluidity and lubricity, whereas cress oil was more stable to oxidation and over a range of temperatures displayed lower kinematic viscosity. The acid and iodine values of field pennycress oil were lower than those for cress oil.