Biodiesel is commonly produced in batch reactors using heat and mechanical mixing as energy input. Ultrasonic cavitational mixing is an effective alternative means to achieve a better mixing in commercial biodiesel processing. Ultrasonic cavitation provides the necessary activation energy for the industrial biodiesel transesterification.
Ultrasonic biodiesel processing allows for the continuous inline processing.Ultrasonication can achieve a biodiesel yield in excess of 99%. Ultrasonic reactors reduce the processing time from the conventional 1 to 4 hour batch processing to less than 30 seconds. More important, ultrasonication reduces the separation time from 5 to 10 hours (using conventional agitation) to less than 60 minutes. The ultrasonication does also help to decrease to amount of catalyst required by up to 50% due to the increased chemical activity in the presence of cavitation (see also sonochemistry). When using ultrasonication the amount of excess methanol required is reduced, too. Another benefit is the resulting increase in the purity of the glycerin.
|Standard Spec||Ultrasonic probe + Digital Generator(reactation tank can be designed)|
Custom System Designs and Consulting,
Active Ultrasonics provides consulting services and custom reactor designs,
High amplitude probe,
Unrestricted flow-through cylindrical systems,
High Power Probe Sonicator.
Ultrasonic processing of biodiesel involves the following steps:
1.the vegetable oil or animal fat is being mixed with the methanol (which makes methyl esters) or ethanol (for ethyl esters) and sodium or potassium methoxide or hydroxide
2.the mix is heated, e.g. to temperatures between 45 and 65degC
3.the heated mix is being sonicated inline for 5 to 15 seconds
4.glycerin drops out or is separated using centrifuges
5.the converted biodiesel is washed with water
Most commonly, the sonication is performed at an elevated pressure (1 to 3bar, gauge pressure) using a feed pump and an adjustable back-pressure valve next to the flow cell.
Liquid - liquid system dispersion (emulsion): if the butter is emulsified to make advanced lactose; when the sauce is made, the raw material is dispersed.
Solid-liquid dispersion (suspension), such as dispersion of powder emulsion.
Gas-liquid system is dispersed, such as the manufacture of carbonated beverage water, which can be improved by the CO2 absorption method, thus improving the stability.