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Processes for obtaining ecological compound that can optimize biodiesel enhanced
Date:7/5/2011

Acetals can play a primordial role in the development of biofuels. In fact, it would appear they can function as additives for biodiesel, to enhance its cetane index and so ignite more easily. They also enhance its oxidation stability and diminish nitrogen oxides emissions. Engineer Ion Agirre focused his research on the acetal known as 1.1 diethoxy butane. He examined the system of reaction usually employed for obtaining it, and proposed alternative measures for the process to be more efficient. He defended his thesis at the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) with the title Innovative reaction systems for acetal (1,1 diethoxy butane) production from renewable sources. He has also published a number of articles; for example, in the Journal of Membrane Science.

1.1 diethoxy butane comes from the acetalisation reaction between ethanol and butanal. With the goal of facilitating the reaction between these two substances, use is made of ionic interchange resins. As a result of this, 1.1 diethoxy butane and water are produced, and so these products have to be separated. The main advantage of this type of acetal is that it has a renewable origin: the ethanol can be obtained from the fermentation of sugar-rich plants and the butanal from the dehydrogenation or the partial oxidation of its corresponding alcohol. Moreover, 1.1 diethoxy butane complies with the majority of the specifications required for adhering to diesel, unlike other acetals such as 1.1 diethoxy ethane, the most well-known acetal. Thus, Dr Agirre, for his thesis, opted to study the process for obtaining diethoxy butane.

Membranes the most efficient

When conventional reactors are employed in the process for obtaining diethoxy butane, they often do not manage to attain it (low conversion). This is what Dr Agirre has shown in his thesis, on studying the kinetics or velocity of reaction in a discontinuous reactor (one that it is not automatically f
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Contact: Amaia Portugal
a.portugal@elhuyar.com
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Elhuyar Fundazioa
Source:Eurekalert

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