Application of Response Surface Methodology to Optimize Biodiesel Production from Esterification of Palmitic Acid in Excess Methanol

Đặng Tấn Hiệp, Chen Bing-Hung


The main purpose of this study was to find out optimal conditions for producing biodiesel via esterification of palmitic acid in excess methanol using solid acid catalyst, viz. Amberlite™ IR-120 (H) resin. A stepwise regression for Box-Behnken design was performed to optimize parameters of this process. A 93.94% of conversion efficiencies could be explained by an insignificant lack-of-fit response surface model (R2 = 0.9394; p = 0.259). Optimum conditions were found as follows: 8:1 in the molar feed ratio of methanol to palmitic acid, a reaction temperature as 61.0 °C, a reaction time of 11.73 h. The catalyst loadings and agitation speed were kept constant at 10 wt.% of palmitic acid and 600 rpm, respectively. Under these conditions, conversion efficiency of palmitic acid to palmitic acid methyl ester reaction is (97.60 ± 0.64)%, and it is nearly 0.19% difference between observed and predicted values. The solid catalyst can be reused at least five times after treating in a simple way.

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Bioteknologi Agrikultur

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Published by Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology