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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Peoria, Illinois » National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research » Bio-oils Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #386810

Research Project: New High-Value Biobased Materials with Applications Across Industry

Location: Bio-oils Research

Title: Production and evaluation of fractionated Tamarind seed oil methyl esters as a new source of biodiesel

item MUSHTAQ, AYESHA - University Of Agriculture - Pakistan
item ASIF HANIF, MUHAMMAD - University Of Agriculture - Pakistan
item ZAHID, MUHAMMAD - University Of Agriculture - Pakistan
item RASHID, UMER - Universiti Putra Malaysia
item MUSHTAQ, ZAHID - University Of Agriculture - Pakistan
item ZUBAIR, MUHAMMAD - University Of Gujrat
item Moser, Bryan
item ALHARTHI, FAHAD - King Saud University

Submitted to: Energies
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/19/2021
Publication Date: 11/2/2021
Citation: Mushtaq, A., Asif Hanif, M., Zahid, M., Rashid, U., Mushtaq, Z., Zubair, M., Moser, B.R., Alharthi, F.A. 2021. Production and evaluation of fractionated Tamarind seed oil methyl esters as a new source of biodiesel. Energies. 14(21). Article 7148.

Interpretive Summary: This research reveals that the seed oil from a common African tree is acceptable as an alternative, low-cost, non-food feedstock for production of renewable biodiesel as an alternative to conventional diesel fuel. The objective of this study was to produce biodiesel from Tamarind seed oil and evaluate its fuel properties taking into consideration important American and European biodiesel fuel standards. Overall, the properties of biodiesel from Tamarind seed oil were comparable to that of soybean-based biodiesel, thus indicating its acceptability as a new source of biodiesel fuels. These results will be important to biodiesel producers, distributors, and end-users (customers) because a new biodiesel fuel was described that exhibits favorable fuel properties. This research may ultimately improve market penetration, availability, and public perception of renewable agricultural fuels such as biodiesel, thus affording greater national independence from petroleum-based fuels.

Technical Abstract: Biodiesel has attracted considerable interest as an alternative biofuel due to its many advantages over conventional petroleum diesel such as inherent lubricity, low toxicity, renewable raw materials, biodegradability, superior flash point, and low carbon footprint. However, high production costs, poor low temperature operability, variability of fuel quality from different feedstocks, and low storage stability negatively impact more widespread adoption. In order to reduce production costs, inexpensive inedible oilseed alternatives are needed for biodiesel production. This study utilized inedible tamarind (Tamarind indica) seed oil as an alternative biodiesel feedstock, which contained linoleic (31.8%), oleic (17.1%) and lauric (12.0%) acids as the primary fatty acids. A simple and cost-effective high vacuum fractional distillation (HVFD) methodology was used to separate the oil into three fractions (F1, F2 and F3). Subsequent transesterification utilizing basic, acidic, and enzymatic catalysis produced biodiesel of consistent quality and overcame the problem of low temperature biodiesel performance. The most desirable biodiesel with regard to low temperature operability was produced from fractions F2 and F3, which were enriched in unsaturated fatty acids relative to tamarind seed oil. Other properties such as density and cetane number were within the limits specified in the American and European biodiesel standards.