Transesterification of sunflower oil produced by solvent extraction

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De Araujo Marin M.P.
Novazzi L.F.
Denari M.L.
Sustainable Engineering Forum 2014 - Core Programming Area at the 2014 AIChE Annual Meeting
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In this work, the leaching of oil from sunflower seeds using hexane was studied. The solution of oil / hexane was thereafter transesterified, with methanol and potassium hydroxide (KOH) as the catalyst, in a batch reactor, for 1 hour and with a constant temperature of 45 °C. It is important to point out that the extracted oil was not refined and was directly used on transesterification reactions. The hexane in the oil / hexane solution acted as a cosolvent and made the oil / methanol mixture forms a single-phase. Experimental results obtained in the transesterification reactions showed that the increase of methanol / oil mole ratio on reaction yield is negative, whereas the increase of catalyst concentration on reaction yield is positive. Reaction yields decreased 18.00% on average when the mole ratio methanol / oil was increased. When catalyst concentration was augmented, reaction yields increased 15.19%, on average. These results are statistically meaningful, since the standard deviation was equal to 0.48%. Moreover, an interaction between methanol / oil mole ratio and catalyst concentration on reaction yield was observed.