biodiesel

Have Biofuel, Will Travel: A Colorful Experiment and a Different Approach to Teach the Undergraduate Laboratory

This experiment describes a  quantitative UV-Vis analysis of mixtures of diesel/ethanol and diesel/biofuel based on the absorption of a solvochromatic probe dye. Students first synthesize the dye and then monitor the change in the dye’s λmax for different known mixtures, creating an empirical scale of solvent polarity. Mixtures containing unknown (to the student) mixtures of diesel/ethanol and diesel/biofuel are then analyzed using calibration curves of solvent polarity as a function of the concentration of ethanol or biofuel.

The full citation is here: El Seoud, O. A., Loffredo, C., Galgano, P. D., Sato, B. M., Reichardt, C.  J. Chem. Educ. 2011, 88, 1293–1297 and a link to the article is provided below (subscription to the journal required).

http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ed1009464

Quantitative Investigations of Biodiesel Fuel

In this experiment students complete four tasks: monitoring the production of biodiesel by a transesterification of a commercial oil; quantifying mixtures of biodiesel and petroleum-based diesel; using a Karl-Fisher titration to determine the impact of water on the quantification of biodiesel; and determining the figures of merit for several IR sampling platforms.

The full citation is here: Ault, A. P.; Pomeroy, R.  J. Chem. Educ. 2012, 89, 243–247 and a link to the article is provided below (subscription to the journal required).

http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ed101097n