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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number EP/F063423/2
Title Designer Catalysts for High Efficiency Biodiesel Production
Status Completed
Energy Categories Renewable Energy Sources(Bio-Energy, Production of transport biofuels (incl. Production from wastes)) 100%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Chemistry) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr K Wilson
No email address given
Cardiff University
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 October 2009
End Date 30 November 2012
Duration 38 months
Total Grant Value £285,898
Industrial Sectors Energy
Region Wales
Programme Energy : Engineering
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr K Wilson , Chemistry, Cardiff University (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Dr AF Lee , Chemistry, Cardiff University (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , BP Biofuels (0.000%)
Web Site
Abstract Tackling the current world energy crisis is recognised as a top priority for both developed and developing nations. Alternative energy sources are therefore urgently sought in response to both diminishing world oil reserves and increasing environmental concerns over global climate change. To be truly viable such alternative energy sources must be sustainable, that is "have the ability to meet 21st century energy needs without compromising those of future generations." While a number ofsustainable technologies are currently receiving heavy investment, the most easily implemented and low cost solutions for transportation needs are those based upon biomass derived fuels. Spearheading such renewable fuels is biodiesel - a biodegradable, non toxic fuel synthesised from animal fats or plant oils extracted from cereal or non-food crops.We recently developed a range of first-generation solid acid and base catalysts that respectively remove undesired free fatty acid (FFA) impurities, and transform naturally occurring triglycerides found within plant oils into clean biodiesel. Here we propose to achieve a step-change in both catalyst, and overall process efficiency, through a combination of new synthetic materials chemistry and reactor technologies, in combination with computer-aided catalyst and process design. Our goal is the delivery of second-generation mesostructured solid acids and bases, optimised for efficient diffusion and reaction of bulky triglycerides and FFAs, and an intensified process allowing tandem esterification and transesterification of plant oil. Together these new green chemical technologies offer vastly streamlined biodiesel production, with associated annual energy savings of 5.5 billion kWh and a reduction in CO2 emissions by 2.4 million tonnes per annum at current production rates
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 23/12/09