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

Award Information
Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$150,000.00
Award Year:
2007
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
0711652
Award Id:
84912
Agency Tracking Number:
0711652
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
210 S. Wedgewood Lane, 6745 HOLLISTER AVENUE, Carbondale, IL, 62901
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
788119118
Principal Investigator:
RongJiang
Dr
(618) 351-7424
rjiang@megiprocess.com
Business Contact:
RongJiang
PhD
(618) 351-7424
midwesternergygroup@yahoo.com
Research Institute:
Southern IL University Carbondale
Yong K Gao
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Carbondale, IL, 62901 7211
(618) 453-4904
Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
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.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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