Thermal Processing of Low-Grade Glycerol to Alcohols for Biodiesel Production, Phase II
This submission is the continuation of the project approved by NIATT UTC in August 2007 (KLK750). The objective of this project is to conduct process research to convert the low-grade glycerol derived from biodiesel production to short-chain primary alcohols of methanol, ethanol, and/or propanols or their mix, and reuse them in the biodiesel production. The tasks in Phase II of the project focus on the experimental investigation of the process.
Dealing with the excessive glycerol from biodiesel production is a dilemma of the industry because the crude glycerol possesses very low value due to the impurities present. This project responds to the call for alternative value-added applications of the crude glycerol to ensure the healthy growth of the biodiesel industry. Successful completion of the project will contribute to the current knowledge base on utilization of crude glycerol and will benefit the whole biodiesel industry. The expected outcomes include (1) improved understanding of glycerol conversion to primary alcohols to contribute to the scientific knowledge base, (2) a technology of glycerol hydro-thermochemical conversion to primary alcohols to solve the major challenge facing the biodiesel industry, and (3) new opportunities to train undergraduate and graduate students for the biofuel industry.