Bio-diesel from hemp plants
SCIENTISTS collaborating in bio-diesel research at universities in Pakistan, India and Italy have published a new method to convert hemp oil into bio-diesel using magnetic metal oxide particles.
In a paper titled “Experimental analysis of di-functional magnetic oxide catalyst and its performance in the hemp plant biodiesel production”, published in Applied Energy, these scientists described using nanometresized, magnetic metal oxide particles to catalyse the conversion of hemp oil into biodiesel fuel.
They report a maximum biodiesel yield of 92,16% under optimal operating conditions.
The scientist shared data from the Biofuel and Biodiversity Laboratory in the Department of Plant Sciences, at the Quaid-i-Azam University in Pakistan, the ENEA/ ICTP Research Centre Trisaia in Italy and the School of Chemical Engineering at the Universiti Sains Malaysia.
While it will take a few more years to scale up their experiments, their research could solve the current choice biofuel growers have to make — whether to use land to grow food for humans or fuel for vehicles.
This faster way to turn hemp oil into bio-diesel means the local hemp plantation throughout Africa may yet become harvests that provide fuel for older diesel engines across the continent. An earlier study in 2010, a study published in Phys.org by Richard Parnas, a professor of chemical, materials, and biomolecular engineering at the University of Connecticut, showed virgin hemp seed oil can be turned into very good biodiesel using a standardised process called transesterification.
Parras said hemp farmers could produce enough fuel to power their whole farm with the oil of hemp seeds.
— Wheels Reporter.