Active phase of calcium oxide used as solid base catalyst for transesterification of soybean oil with refluxing methanol
For developing a process of biodiesel production with environmental benignity, much interest has been focused on solid base catalysts such as calcium oxide for transesterification of vegetable oils with methanol. In this paper, the active phase of calcium oxide was investigated by characterizing the catalyst collected after achieving the conversion of edible soybean oil into its methyl ester at reflux of methanol in a glass batch reactor. Calcium oxide combined with the by-produced glycerol, so that calcium diglyceroxide was a major constituent of the collected catalyst. The absence of calcium methoxide was clear from the spectrum of solid-state 13C-NMR. The chemical change of calcium oxide was not observed, when the yield of FAME reached 30%. The collected catalyst was not as active as the fresh one (calcium oxide), but was reused without any deactivation. In order to identify the active phase of the collected catalyst, we prepared calcium diglyceroxide by immersion of calcium oxide with refluxing methanol in the presence of glycerol. Calcium diglyceroxide prepared as the reference sample was as active as the collected catalyst in the transesterification, and was tolerant to air-exposure.
Graphical abstractBy characterizing the catalyst collected after achieving the conversion of edible soybean oil into its methyl ester at reflux of methanol in a glass batch reactor, the active site of calcium oxide was investigated Calcium oxide combined with the by-produced glycerol, so that the collected catalyst consisted of calcium diglyceroxide (Ca(C3H7O3)2). Calcium diglyceroxide functioned as the solid base catalyst in actual fact, and was tolerant to air-exposure.Figure optionsDownload full-size imageDownload as PowerPoint slide
Journal: Applied Catalysis A: General - Volume 334, Issues 1–2, 1 January 2008, Pages 357–365