The Enzymatic process refers to the Enzymatic Transesterification Process, you can down load PDF information here. The enzymatic process consist of two (2) different types of enzyme Biocatalyst A & B, one for transesterification and one for esterification. Feed stocks with 0-100 FFA can be processed at an operating temperature of ONLY 85 F and minimal methanol required. There is no caustics required and no soap formation. The byproducts produced are high quality glycerin and water. This enzymatic process can also be used only for FFA reduction with proved results to reduce FFA levels to less than 1 from any level of FFA with an operating temperature of ONLY 85 F. The methanol requirement is less than 15% by weight for FFA reduction.
The only difference is with the starting material example of our Precision E2500 Biodiesel Production Unit using Enzymes
Unlike the chemical approach, the Enzymatic process can accept both triglyceride and fatty acid as feedstocks, therefore eliminating the need for a costly refining process.
The main differences are highlighted in the table below.
Parameter Enzymatic Process Conventional Process
Reaction temperature 10-35°C 60-70°C (high energy)
Feedstock free fatty acid (FFA) content Any purity feedstock containing up to 100% FFA (FFA in biodiesel reduced to 0.8%) Uses pure vegetable oil only. Makes soap with FFA! Requires pre-treatment in acidic process to remove FFA
Water in feedstock No effect on biocatalysis at water content
Biodiesel yield >98% Typically 96%
Glycerol quality Transparent; salt free; high quality Blackish-brown; pH >7; low quality; contains salt
Catalyst removal Recyclable for one year Final product requires repeated washing to remove catalyst
Methanol recovery No excess methanol for water content
Waste generation Extremely low Significant waste generation: catalyst, saline, alkaline effluent, water
Catalyst requirement/tonne biodiesel 0.3 kg 15 kg
Cost of catalyst/kg biodiesel $0.05-0.07 $0.09-0.11
Capital cost Low. Roughly 50% of capex for conventional technologies – retrofit to enzymatic reactor High
Government directives on biofuel Can be met with any feedstock Cannot be met with available feedstock
Tax incentives Profitable without tax incentives Necessary to reach profitability
Environment Non-toxic Toxic chemicals
Other operating costs Very low High
Enzymes ready to go to work
The Enzymatic process has a unique special feature of the technology with its ability to complete the reaction in less than 30 minutes up to 60 minutes for a typically biodiesel production process. Product quality is consistent and both biodiesel and glycerol meet industrial standards, e.g., EN14214 / ASTM D6751 or EU / USP grade.
Biodiesel can cost lower than diesel
One of the reasons why the biodiesel industry is not growing fast enough, is that diesel is more cost-efficient. The survival of the biodiesel industry depends on if cost can be made equal to or lower than petroleum diesel. This has proven to be a challenge for biodiesel supporters and business owners alike.
Today, combined savings and profit from the Enzymatic process can effectively lower the cost of biodiesel production, allowing business owners to effectively compete with petroleum diesel market prices. Take this case for example: On the basis of crude palm oil that contains 8% FFA and costs USD 681.5 per ton (Dec. 2008), savings that can be made on feedstock and operation are USD 129.8 and 46.9 per ton of biodiesel, respectively, and profit from the high quality glycerol byproduct is priced at up to USD 75.0 per ton of biodiesel produced. The total amount of savings is therefore USD 251.7 per ton or USD 0.251 per kilogram of biodiesel. An even higher profit can be expected if a more inexpensive feedstock is used. Clearly, employing the Enzymatic process is cost-efficient and highly desirable for companies seeking stability in today’s competitive market.
The Enzymatic process is a green biodiesel process that is industrially viable. It is fully automated, continuous and integrated, thus lowering manual labor cost. The popularity of this technology is possible because of its simple operation. Widespread use of the Enzymatic process and its related technologies would promote better safety in the workplace with the elimination of high temperatures and pressures required in reactions, toxic chemicals and VOC.
The technology enables a broadening of system logistics. For example, a decentralized system is a viable model for this type of technology because it is flexible in feedstock acceptance and easy-to-operate, allowing local communities to benefit from their own biofuel energy production.
• Multi-Feedstock Capability
• High Value, Clean Glycerol
• Reusable Catalyst
• Energy Efficient, Low temperature, low energy process
• No Caustic Catalysts or Strong Acids Required
• Lower Capital Investment
• “Scale Neutral” – Works at Large of Small Scale
• Add to Existing Infrastructure
• Results in low FFA, dry feedstock ready for transesterification
• Fully continuous
• Easy, low temperature system converts up to 100% FFA to less than 1% FFA
• Very low methanol use, no acidic methanol created.
• Low capital cost, same equipment also used as part of an enzymatic transesterification system
• Creates 99.6% pure glycerin after moisture and methanol removal
• Eliminate Soap and Waste Water. No caustic catalysts and no soap formed, reduces or eliminates water washing, ion exchange, and adsorbants.
As demand for feedstock oils in the alternative fuels industry grows, the survival of biodiesel as a petroleum diesel fuel substitute will depend on process efficiency. Producers have to cut costs and increase revenues to retain value at the producer level. The greatest opportunity to increase that value is the creation of a high quality glycerol on-site. Technical glycerol is 3 – 5 times more valuable than “refined” biodiesel glycerol (80% pure), while USP grade is 10 – 15 times more valuable. Added value to the glycerol will keep biodiesel producers competitive by creating a co-product which is as or more valuable than the biodiesel itself. For more on Enzymes for Esterification or Transesterification or to have your feedstock tested please contact us at info@70CentsaGallon.com (941) 870-2306 www.70CentsaGallon.com