Application of Supercritical Fluids for Biodiesel Production

  • Ikumei Setsu
  • Ching-Hung Chen
  • Chao-Rui Chen
  • Wei-Heng Chen
  • Chien-Hsiun Tu
  • Shih-Ming Lai
  • Chieh-Ming J. Chang


This chapter elucidates supercritical carbon dioxide (SC-CO2) extraction of triglycerides from powdered Jatropha curcas kernels and seeds, followed by a series of subcritical hydrolysis and supercritical methylation of the extracted SC-CO2 oil to obtain a 98.5% purity level of biodiesel. Effects of the reaction temperature, the reaction time, and the solvent-to-solid ratio on free fatty acid (FFA) in the hydrolyzed oil and fatty acid esters in the methylated oil via two experimental designs were also examined. Supercritical methylation of the hydrolyzed oil following subcritical hydrolysis of the SC-CO2 extract yielded a methylation reaction conversion of 99%, and activation energies of hydrolysis and transesterified reactions were found, respectively. This study demonstrates that supercritical methylation preceded by subcritical hydrolysis of the SC-CO2-extracted oil is a feasible two-step process in producing biodiesel from powdered Jatropha kernels better than that from Jatropha seeds. The economical estimation of the process was also examined.


Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Supercritical Fluid Extraction Supercritical Methanol Jatropha Seed Jatropha Curcas 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors would like to thank the National Science Council of the Republic of China, Taiwan (contract no. NSC 98-2221-E005-053-MY3), and the Ministry of Education of the Republic of China, Taiwan, under the ATU plan for financially supporting this research.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ikumei Setsu
    • 1
  • Ching-Hung Chen
    • 1
  • Chao-Rui Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wei-Heng Chen
    • 1
  • Chien-Hsiun Tu
    • 3
  • Shih-Ming Lai
    • 4
  • Chieh-Ming J. Chang
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemical EngineeringNational Chung Hsing UniversityTaichungTaiwan
  2. 2.Chemical Engineering DivisionInstitute of Nuclear Energy ResearchTaoyuanROC
  3. 3.Department of Applied ChemistryProvidence UniversityTaichungROC
  4. 4.Department of Chemical and Materials EngineeringNational Yunlin University of Science and TechnologyTouliu, YunlinROC

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