Biodiesel Production from Jatropha Curcas Oil with High Free Fatty Acid Content using Microwave-assisted
Energy is one of the most important necessity for human being. Nowadays, 80% of the world’s energy demands is the contribution of fossil fuel or non-renewable energy. One of the potential alternative energy is biodiesel. Biodiesel can be produced from variety of sources such as edible oils, non-edible oil, animal fats, and other sources. One of the raw materials that can be used as raw material for biodiesel production is Jatropha curcas oil. Currently, the majority of transesterification is performed by heating using a hot plate or an oil bath. The recent technology showed that biodiesel can be produced using microwave-assisted and the time required for the reaction is faster than using conventional heating. Microwave technology allows biodiesel production from vegetable oil with Free Fatty Acid (FFA) content above 2% through one-step transesterification. This study uses Jatropha curcas oil feedstocks with FFA content of 8.4% and 0.4% water content. Variations of the variables, which are used in this study, are the catalyst concentration 1.0%, 1.5%, 2.0%, 2.5%, 3.0%, and the molar ratio methanol:oil 5:1, 6:1, 7:1, 8:1 9:1. The reaction time is set for 2 minutes with the reaction temperature of 65°C and rotation speed 350 rpm. The results of the transesterification reaction of Jatropha curcas oil showed the best variable in terms of quantity (yield) and quality (Fatty Acid Methyl Ester/FAME content) is the catalyst concentration 2.0% and molar ratio methanol:oil 8:1 with biodiesel yield 79.19%, reaction conversion 84.01%, and 96.75% FAME content.
Keyword: Biodiesel, Jatropha curcas oil, Microwave.