Journal of the American Oil Chemists' Society

, Volume 88, Issue 8, pp 1203–1209

Substrate Pretreatment can Reduce the Alcohol Requirement During Biodiesel Production Via in Situ Transesterification

Original Paper


The ability of physical pretreatment of the feedstock to reduce the alcohol requirement for high yield fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) production during the in situ transesterification of soybeans was investigated. Four physical treatments were studied: (a) dehulling and flaking, (b) dehulling, flaking and passage through a twin screw extruder, (c) passage through an expander type extruder, or (d) conversion to a flour-like consistency (1–10 μm particles) via disruption in a Pulsewave disintegrator. Following drying, optimal reaction conditions for high yield, room temperature, in situ transesterification of the lipid-linked fatty acids resident in these materials were determined. Expander and Pulsewave pretreatment did not substantially reduce the amount of methanol required for high level FAME production below that required for flaked soybeans. However, the combination of flaking, extrusion and drying achieved a minimum nearly threefold reduction in the methanol requirement compared with that for soybeans that had been only flaked and dried. The flaking/extrusion/drying regime resulted in a minimum optimal molar ratio for (methanol/substrate fatty acid) of 9:1 for effective in situ transesterification. This is a 20-fold reduction in methanol usage compared to the previously reported ratio of 181:1 for the use of flaked-only soybeans. (Haas et al. in J Am Oil Chem Soc 81:83–89, 2004).


Biodiesel Fats and oils utilization Fatty acid ester In situ transesterification Transesterification 


  1. 1.
    Harrington KJ, D’Arcy-Evans C (1985) Transesterification in situ of sunflower seed oil. Ind Eng Chem Prod Res Dev 24:314–318CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Harrington KJ, D’Arcy-Evans C (1985) A comparison of conventional and in situ methods of transesterification of seed oil from a series of sunflower cultivars. J Am Oil Chem Soc 62:1009–1013CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Siler-Marinkovic S, Tomasevic A (1998) Transesterification of sunflower oil in situ. Fuel 77:1389–1391CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ozgul S, Turkay S (1993) In situ esterification of rice bran oil with methanol and ethanol. J Am Oil Chem Soc 70:145–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Ozgul-Yucel S, Turkay S (2002) Variables affecting the yields of methyl esters derived from in situ esterification of rice bran oil. J Am Oil Chem Soc 79:611–613CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ozgul-Yucel S, Turkay S (2003) FA monoalkylesters from rice bran oil by in situ esterification. J Am Oil Chem Soc 80:81–84CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Kildiran G, Ozgul-Yucel S, Turkay S (1996) In situ alcoholysis of soybean oil. J Am Oil Chem Soc 73:225–228CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Haas MJ, Scott KM, Marmer WN, Foglia TA (2004) In situ alkaline transesterification: an effective method for the production of fatty acid esters from vegetable oil. J Am Oil Chem Soc 81:83–89CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Haas MJ, Scott KM, Foglia TA, Marmer WN (2007) The general applicability of in situ transesterification for the production of fatty acid esters from a variety of feedstocks. J Am Oil Chem Soc 84:963–970CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Haas MJ, Scott KM (2007) Moisture removal substantially improves the efficiency of in situ biodiesel production from soybeans. J Am Oil Chem Soc 84:197–204CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Barrows FT, Gaylord TG, Sealey WM, Haas MJ, Stroup RL (2008) Processing soybean meal for biodiesel production: effect of a new processing method on growth performance of rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss. Aquaculture 283:141–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Freedman B, Pryde EH, Mounts TL (1984) Variables affecting the yields of fatty esters from transesterified vegetable oils. J Am Oil Chem Soc 61:1638–1643CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Haas MJ, Stroup RL, Yee W, McAloon A (2006) A comparative analysis of the predicted economics of biodiesel production from soybean oil and from intact soybeans. Abstracts, 97th AOCS annual meeting & expo, American Oil Chemists Society, Champaign, IL. 68Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Lamsal BP, Murphy PA, Johnson LA (2006) Flaking and extrusion as mechanical treatments for enzyme-assisted aqueous extraction of oil from soybeans. J Am Oil Chem Soc 83:973–979CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    National Biodiesel Board (2009) fuel facts sheet Accessed September 2009
  16. 16.
    Arnold CA (2000) Apparatus and methods for pulverizing materials into small particles. U. S. Patent 6,135,370Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Box GEP, Hunter WG, Hunter JS (1978) Statistics for experimenters. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    SAS/STAT User’s Guide, Version 8, SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC (1999)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Haas MJ, McAloon AJ, Yee W, Foglia TA (2006) A process model to estimate biodiesel production costs. Bioresour Technol 97:671–678CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© AOCS (outside the USA) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.U. S. Department of AgricultureAgricultural Research Service, Eastern Regional Research CenterWyndmoorUSA

Personalised recommendations