Immobilizing Phosphotungstic Acid on Al2O3-ZnO Nano Mixed Oxides as Heterogeneous Catalyst for Biodiesel Production by Esterification of Free Fatty Acids

Document Type: Research Article


1 Department of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials, Materials and Energy Research Center, MeshkinDasht, Alborz, Iran.

2 ِDepartment of Energy, Materials and Energy Research Center, MeshkinDasht, Alborz, Iran.


This study investigated the esterification reaction of different carboxylic acids (Acetic acid, Palmitic acid, and Oleic acid) and ethanol by ZnO, Al2O3-ZnOmixed oxide, and phosphotungestic acid (10 wt %) immobilized on the Al2O3-ZnOmixed oxide. The heterogeneous catalysts were characterized by XRD, BET, FE-SEM, and EDX techniques. Optimum yield was achieved by using 10 % HPW/Al2O3-ZnOas the best catalyst, and the effects of the amount of catalyst, molar ratio of acid to alcohol, reaction temperature, and time were investigated to ensure the ideal yield of esterification reaction of acetic acid and ethanol. The results showed that the esterification of acetic acid to its ethyl ester was carried out in 3.5 hours, with an alcohol-to-acid-molar ratio of 2 and a temperature of 80 ˚C with yield 98 %. Moreover, the 10 % HPW/Al2O3-ZnOcatalystshowed well activity in biodiesel production by the esterification of palmitic and oleic acids and the reaction yield did not decrease with an increase in alkyl chain lengthin acid molecules, remarkably.


Main Subjects

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