Evaluation of Fuel (Biodiesel) Quality Parameters of the Seed Oil of Sweet Melon (Cucumis Melo)

Research Area: Volume 7,Issue 1, Jan. 2018 Year: 2018
Type of Publication: Article Keywords: Sweet Melon, Properties, Biodegradable, Engine, Renewable Energy, Substitute, Vegetable Oil
  • Umar Alhaji Muhammad
  • Ibrahim Hassan Garba
Journal: IJEIR Volume: 7
Number: 1 Pages: 72-76
Month: January
ISSN: 2277-5668
Oil was extracted from the seeds of Sweet melon (Cucumis melo) using n-Hexane as a solvent. The physico-chemical properties of Cucumis melo seed oil (CMSO) such as specific gravity, viscosity, moisture content, refractive index, density, acid value, saponificaton value, iodine value, and peroxide values were determined and the results all fall within the recommended ranges as stated by biodiesel standard quality control organizations. Base-catalyzed Transesterification of (CMSO) was carried out at a methanol/oil ratio of 5:1 at 50oC producing biodiesel, a fuel comprising mono-alkly esters of long chain fatty acid derived from vegetable oil or animal fat. The effect of potassium hydroxide (KOH) and sodium hydroxide (NaOH) catalyst were also investigated. The reason of the Transesterification process is to lower the viscosity. Fuel quality parameters like density, viscosity, cloud point, flash point, pour point, acid value, cetane number, higher heating values were also within the recommended range. The results of the effects of the two catalysts on the yield of biodiesel showed that KOH catalyst gave a higher yield of biodiesel compared to the NaOH catalyst. The biodiesel yields for KOH catalyzed process was 64%, while that for NaOH catalyzed was 46%. The fuel properties of CMSO methyl esters were similar to those of Soya bean and pentaclethra macrophylla biodiesel. Therefore the refined, chemically processed and degummed CMSO can be used to run compression ignition on engines for longer duration since the major problems of chocking with unmodified vegetable oil has been overcome.

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