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Evaluating the Energy Requirements of Small-Scale Biodiesel Production From Raw Tallow of Tanning Industry

[+] Author Affiliations
V. H. Rangel-Hernandez, F. Lara-Barron, A. Zaleta-Aguilar, J. M. Riesco-Avila, A. Gallegos-Muñoz

University of Guanajuato, Salamanca, GTO, México

Paper No. IMECE2009-12006, pp. 149-158; 10 pages
  • ASME 2009 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 6: Emerging Technologies: Alternative Energy Systems; Energy Systems: Analysis, Thermodynamics and Sustainability
  • Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA, November 13–19, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4379-6 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3863-1
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


The study at hand provides an analysis of the energy input-yield ratios of a planned small-scale raw-tallow-fuelled biodiesel production plant. In the state of Guanajuato, the rendering activities generate roughly 150 tonnes of raw tallow that is refused into nearby pounds or rivers, a common practice that causes an irreversible environmental damage. So in order to make use of this residue, it is proposed here to use it as feedstock for a biodiesel production plant. The plant is assumed to be comprised of a separation process, an acid catalized pretreatment, a transesterification process, a steam generator and a storage zone. Hence a detailed energy analysis was carried out to evaluate the mass and energy transfer ratios of each subsystem as well as their energy efficiencies so as to decide whether the plant could be technical and economically feasible and competitive. The results of this former study must be seen as the base for an informed dialogue with important stakeholders and governmental organizations.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME



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