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STTR Phase I: Low-Cost Biodiesel Production via Novel Esterification and…

Award Information

National Science Foundation
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2007 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Midwest Energy Group Inc.
210 S. Wedgewood Lane carbondale, IL 62901-2148
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: Yes
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2007
Title: STTR Phase I: Low-Cost Biodiesel Production via Novel Esterification and Transesterification Catalysts
Agency: NSF
Contract: 0711652
Award Amount: $150,000.00


This Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) Phase I project develops methods for the use of novel esterification and transesterification catalysts to cut the cost of biodiesel production which have become a critical bottleneck for greater biodiesel use. At the current time, biodiesel is produced through a transesterification catalytic process and the catalyst employed is sensitive to water and free fatty acids (FFA). As a consequence, biodiesel producers have to purchase expensive equipments to remove water and FFA from the feedstocks which lowers the yields of biodiesel production. This research develops a novel transesterification catalyst that can tolerate water, FFA and a second esterification catalyst to directly convert unwanted FFA into biodiesel. The broader impacts of this work are: (1) cutting the cost of biodiesel production due to improved production yields and the adoption of high-volume, continuous production of biodiesel; (2) potentially expanding the range of biodiesel feedstock selections to allow much cheaper inedible animal fats and recycled cooking oils, all of which contain significant amounts of FFA; and (3) finally, enabling the wider use of biodiesel to reduce our reliance on crude oil imports, support local agricultural economies, and provide a more environmentally friendly alternative to non-renewable fossil-fuel energy sources.

Principal Investigator:

Rong M. Jiang

Business Contact:

Rong M. Jiang
Small Business Information at Submission:

Midwest Energy Group Inc.
210 S. Wedgewood Lane 6745 HOLLISTER AVENUE Carbondale, IL 62901

EIN/Tax ID: 383745752
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
Southern IL University Carbondale
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Carbondale, IL 62901 7211
Contact: Yong K. Gao
Contact Phone: (618) 453-4904
RI Type: Nonprofit college or university