Enzymatic Production of Biodiesel? The vast majority of biodiesel today is manufactured using chemical catalysts and methanol. A few problems are associated with this type of processing. These include 1) the need to remove free fatty acids (FFA) from the oil feedstock prior to reaction, 2) the need to remove phospholipids from the oil feedstock, and 3) the recovery of unreacted methanol and biodiesel purification and dewatering post reaction. An up and coming technological solution to chemical catalysis of oils and fats is to use enzymes, lipase and phospholipase. Lipase enzymatically forms the methyl ester on FFA as well as doing transesterification on di- and tri-glycerides, yielding methanol and biodiesel. The phospholipase converts phospholipids to phosphates and FFA, increasing the substrates for the lipase. The yield of biodiesel without pretreating the raw oil can be much higher. Today the drawback of the enzymatic process is two-fold: the cost of the enzyme and the loss of enzyme in the methanol solution. New technologies are available to resolve both problems. The enzymes are being cost-effectively immobilized onto substrates that allow them to be recycled as well as protected from the methanol environment. In addition, slow addition of methanol so that it is not in high concentration at any one moment is also effective. With these innovations and the possibility for much higher yields from lower quality oils, it appears that enzymatic biodiesel may become the new industrial methodology.
Large renewable energy and biochemical consulting firms like Lee Enterprises Consulting normally offer a wide range of services in biofuels, biochemicals, biotechnologies, biomaterials, synthetic biology commercialization, feedstocks, and hemp/cannabis. These companies should have business and financial services like due diligence, feedstock availability, grants and loans and bio market research. The company also offers technical and engineering related services like techno economic analysis, environmental evaluations, feasibility studies, risk analysis and expert witness engagements. They might also have strategic partnerships in place to assist clients with insurance, legal, accounting, plant fabrication, feedstock procurement.
With over 150 experts worldwide, Lee Enterprises Consulting has experts in many specific clean and renewable areas, including anaerobic digestion, fermentation, biomass, conversion technologies for things like tires and railroad ties, organic synthesis, fuel additives, ethanol gas, biodiesel fuel including algae biofuels, solid state and industrial fermentation, green energy grants, ag biotech, agricultural waste, alcohol fuels, alternative proteins and animal-free products, sustainable foods, beverage fermentation, biocatalysis, biodiesel conversion, biogas production, biomass power, carbon intensity, co2 utilization, combined heat & power, Fischer-Tropsch technology, food waste, hydrothermal carbonization, industrial enzymes, landfill management, microbial fermentation, organic synthesis, plastic pyrolysis, plastic recycling, plastic waste, pyrolysis oil, reactor design, renewable identification number, the Renewable Fuel Standard (rfs2), solid recovered fuels, torrefaction and torrefied biomass, waste to energy, and waste-to-hydrogen. This is a multidisciplinary group of green energy consultants that is a virtual “one stop shop” for any client need and handles projects of all types and sizes.
Look at our experts and the services we provide. Most of our experts are also available to advise and serve as expert witnesses in bioeconomy litigation matters. For the larger projects, we specialize in putting together full service, interdisciplinary teams with one point of contact. See video about LEC here. Call us at 1+ (501) 833-8511 or email us for more information.