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Open AccessArticle

Catalytic Performance of Bulk and Al2O3-Supported Molybdenum Oxide for the Production of Biodiesel from Oil with High Free Fatty Acids Content

1
Departamento de Ciencias, Edificio de los Acebos, Universidad Pública de Navarra, Campus de Arrosadía s/n, 31006 Pamplona, Spain
2
Institute for Advanced Materials (InaMat), Universidad Pública de Navarra, Campus de Arrosadía, Pamplona, Spain
3
Departamento de Química Inorgánica e Instituto de Ciencia de Materiales de Sevilla, Centro mixto Universidad de Sevilla-CSIC, Av. Américo Vespucio 49, 41092 Seville, Spain
4
Institute of Energy Technologies, Department of Chemical Engineering and Barcelona Research Center in Multiscale Science and Engineering. Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, EEBE, Eduard Maristany 16, 08019 Barcelona, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Catalysts 2020, 10(2), 158; https://doi.org/10.3390/catal10020158
Received: 16 January 2020 / Revised: 25 January 2020 / Accepted: 29 January 2020 / Published: 1 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomass Derived Heterogeneous and Homogeneous Catalysts)
Non-edible vegetable oils are characterized by high contents of free fatty acids (FFAs) that prevent from using the conventional basic catalysts for the production of biodiesel. In this work, solid acid catalysts are used for the simultaneous esterification and transesterification with methanol of the FFAs and triglycerides contained in sunflower oil acidified with oleic acid. Molybdenum oxide (MoO3), which has been seldom considered as a catalyst for the production of biodiesel, was used in bulk and alumina-supported forms. Results showed that bulk MoO3 is very active for both transesterification and esterification reactions, but it suffered from severe molybdenum leaching in the reaction medium. When supported on Al2O3, the MoO3 performance improved in terms of active phase utilization and stability though molybdenum leaching remained significant. The improvement of catalytic performance was ascribed to the establishment of MoO3-Al2O3 interactions that favored the anchorage of molybdenum to the support and the formation of new strong acidic centers, although this effect was offset by a decrease of specific surface area. It is concluded that the development of stable catalysts based on MoO3 offers an attractive route for the valorization of oils with high FFAs content. View Full-Text
Keywords: acid catalysis; biodiesel; biofuel; esterification; fatty acid; methanolysis; molybdenum oxide; transesterification; vegetable oil acid catalysis; biodiesel; biofuel; esterification; fatty acid; methanolysis; molybdenum oxide; transesterification; vegetable oil
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MDPI and ACS Style

Navajas, A.; Reyero, I.; Jiménez-Barrera, E.; Romero-Sarria, F.; Llorca, J.; Gandía, L.M. Catalytic Performance of Bulk and Al2O3-Supported Molybdenum Oxide for the Production of Biodiesel from Oil with High Free Fatty Acids Content. Catalysts 2020, 10, 158. https://doi.org/10.3390/catal10020158

AMA Style

Navajas A, Reyero I, Jiménez-Barrera E, Romero-Sarria F, Llorca J, Gandía LM. Catalytic Performance of Bulk and Al2O3-Supported Molybdenum Oxide for the Production of Biodiesel from Oil with High Free Fatty Acids Content. Catalysts. 2020; 10(2):158. https://doi.org/10.3390/catal10020158

Chicago/Turabian Style

Navajas, Alberto; Reyero, Inés; Jiménez-Barrera, Elena; Romero-Sarria, Francisca; Llorca, Jordi; Gandía, Luis M. 2020. "Catalytic Performance of Bulk and Al2O3-Supported Molybdenum Oxide for the Production of Biodiesel from Oil with High Free Fatty Acids Content" Catalysts 10, no. 2: 158. https://doi.org/10.3390/catal10020158

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