Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 1103–1110 | Cite as

Heterogeneous catalysis for biodiesel synthesis and valorization of glycerol

  • Dheerendra Singh
  • Anuradda Ganesh
  • Sanjay MahajaniEmail author
Original Paper


In the present work, heterogeneous catalysts in the synthesis of biodiesel, glycerol-based chemicals i.e., mono-glyceride, glycerol carbonate and di-methyl carbonate are explored. Use of heterogeneous catalysts can make the production process cost-effective and environment-friendly. We evaluated three catalysts viz. ZnO/Zeolite, PbO/Zeolite, and MgO for the above mentioned syntheses. The conversion of jatropha oil and the yield of biodiesel on ZnO/zeolite were found to be around 100 and 93.8 %, respectively, at optimum reaction conditions. Selectivity for mono-glyceride in esterification of oleic acid with glycerol was found to be as high as 70–80 % in a conversion range of 60–90 %. Ammonia formed in the synthesis of glycerol carbonate and di-methyl carbonate can be used with CO2 for the production of one of the reactants i.e., urea, thereby providing the opportunity to reduce carbon foot print.


Biodiesel Heterogeneous catalyst Mono-glyceride Glycerol carbonate Di-methyl carbonate 



The authors gratefully acknowledge SAIF, IIT, Bombay, for their help in characterization of catalysts and Mr. Rohidas Bhoi for his assistance in experimental work.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dheerendra Singh
    • 1
  • Anuradda Ganesh
    • 1
  • Sanjay Mahajani
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Energy Science and EngineeringIndian Institute of Technology, BombayMumbaiIndia
  2. 2.Department of Chemical EngineeringIndian Institute of Technology, BombayMumbaiIndia

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