Pineapple (Ananás comosus) leaves ash as a solid base catalyst for biodiesel synthesis

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Bioresource Technology


Elsevier Ltd


School of Engineering




Barros, S. D. S., Junior, W. A. P., Sá, I. S., Takeno, M. L., Nobre, F. X., Pinheiro, W., ... & de Freitas, F. A. (2020). Pineapple (Ananás comosus) leaves ash as a solid base catalyst for biodiesel synthesis. Bioresource Technology, 312, Article 123569.


Homogeneous catalysts used for biodiesel synthesis have several limitations, including non-recoverability/reusability, saponification, emulsification, equipment corrosion, and environmental pollution. To overcome these limitations, we synthesized a novel catalyst via calcination of pineapple leaves waste. This catalyst was characterized by X-ray powder diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, thermogravimetric analysis, scanning electron microscopy, and soluble alkalinity measurements. The catalyst's activity with regards to soybean oil transesterification was analyzed, and multiple process parameters (temperature, catalyst amount, reaction time, and methanol:oil molar ratio) were examined. A high catalytic activity, probably related to the 85 wt% content of alkali/alkali metals (K, Ca and Mg), was observed after a 30 min reaction time, 60 °C, 4 wt% of catalyst, oil to methanol molar ratio of 1:40, reaching an oil to biodiesel conversion above 98%. We conclude that the novel catalyst presented here is efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable, while simultaneously abundant waste is reduced. © 2020 Elsevier Ltd



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