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Open Access Original research

Methanolysis optimization of sesame (Sesamum indicum) oil to biodiesel and fuel quality characterization

Eriola Betiku1* and Tunde Folorunsho Adepoju2

Author Affiliations

1 Biochemical Engineering Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, 220005, Nigeria

2 Department of Chemical Engineering, Landmark University, P.M.B 1001, Omu-Aran, Kwara State, Nigeria

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International Journal of Energy and Environmental Engineering 2013, 4:9  doi:10.1186/2251-6832-4-9

Published: 12 February 2013


Statistical approach was employed to optimize biodiesel production from sesame oil in this work. Precisely, response surface methodology was applied, and the effects of four variables, viz. reaction temperature, catalyst amount, reaction time, and methanol/oil molar ratio, and their reciprocal interactions were determined. Central composite rotatable design was used to generate a total of 30 individual experiments, which were designed to study the effects of these variables during alkali-catalyzed methanolysis of sesame oil. A statistical model predicted the highest conversion yield of sesame biodiesel to be 99.71% at the following optimized variable conditions: reaction temperature of 63°C, catalyst amount of 1.04 wt.%, and methanol/oil molar ratio of 6.24, with a reaction time of 51.09 min. Using these variables under experimental condition in four independent replicates, an actual biodiesel yield of 98.36% was accomplished. The fuel properties of biodiesel produced were found to be within the ASTM D6751 and DIN EN 14214 biodiesel specifications.

Biodiesel; Sesame oil; Methanolysis; Optimization; Response surface methodology