I think it would take a lot of NaOH to first saturate the methanol and then to absorb the water. The methoxide would be unusable because there would be far too much catalyst.
If you could extract the water saturated NaOH from the methanol saturated NaOH you would have a very caustic substance to dispose of.
The calcium hydroxide (builders lime/ whitewash) which is left over from the quicklime process is a useful product.
What's the result of using CaO to dry the methanol?
Any good results? Or bad one?
No progress yet. This is a hectic week for me, both family and work matters so it will be a few days before I can start my trials.
Imake, what is your molecular sieve process like, I mean how much seive do you use to what proportion of methanol? My reclaimed meth is usually between 95-97% purity, I am interested in trying to get it higher with the seive, I have about six 55 gallon drums to process.
Hello Fabricator, Ive responded to the same questions on the other topic so check it out to hear how melecular sieve works. Your 6 drums amount to 1250 litres of methanol. If we take your lower purity of 95% then it contains about 60 litres of water which weighs 60 kilos. That means you will need 300 kilos of molecular sieve. If you buy 25 kilos of sieve and use it 12 times that will finish the job. Its a lot of work for a small improvement in purity.
I distill to 85% and then use sieve to bring it up to 99.9%. This method increases my total yield considerably.
Thank's Imake excellent info.
I have continued to experiment with methods of drying oil feedstock before processing. Two weeks ago used a fan to blow cold air over hot oil and got a reduction fron 2400ppm to 700ppm in one hour.
This time I used hot air from a paint stripper heat gun to blow hot air over hot oil and got a reduction fron 2400ppm to 50ppm.
Obviously hot air is more effective but at a cost of more energy. No suprise there really
I now feel ready to begin the next phase of water removal. The 33 litres of methoxide that I use to process 150 litres of oil contains .65 litres of water. I am going to atempt to eliminate that water by adding calcium oxide.
The main difficulty I forsee is the amount of heat the reaction will produce. If the temp of the methoxide exceeds 68 degrees C the methanol will begin to boil.
If you have a condenser setup you could loop the feed hose (or just use a cold water bath) around your methanol tank to offset some of the heat. Legal Eagle recently posted some pics of a commercial plant that used a water jacket on their methoxide mix tank to keep it cool...
Simple schematic for a pump and heater control with a high limit
Sensor for the biodiesel/glycerin layer
A cold water bath is probably going to be tha simplest way to keep the process cool. Also the quicklime could be dosed in several stages to reduce the heat output.
Anyone tryed this yet?
I have got a quantity of quicklime and am ready to try it out. I have been experimenting with demething recently so I dont want to try two new things at the same time because it can confuse the results. I hope to get at it next week.
Interesting discussion, I'm looking forward to your quicklime results!
On another note, anyone try sodium bentonite, (I know, here I go again ). It works great at removing water created during AE/HTAE, I would guess it would do the same for base reactions.
With bentonite the question is will it absorb methanol as well as water? One would have to try it and see.
It proved to not do it with AE/HTAE so I would imagine it would be helpful with base. I think its worth trying, Ill set up some tests when I get some time, maybe this weekend.
Bentonite would hae the advantage that there is no reaction happening only absorption. This means there will be no heat produced which might make it easier to handle. Would you propose to allow the bentonite to settle and be removed before using the methoxide or to remove it later with the glycerol by product?
What is bentonite adding to the mix? It seems like there would be a lot of trace elements in clay, and relatively high levels of salts.
Bentonite is approved for food use and is used to clear wine sediment so is unlikely to add anything much to our veg oil/ biodiesel.
Imake, I would leave it in for the whole reaction so it would be constantly taking up water. In HTAE/AE I put it in a sack near the outlet on the tank for the pump, that way it always has oil circulating through it.
Fab, I don't think it would hurt base, AE is very sensitive and it makes the reaction go better so I would guess it would be benificial to base as well. We should set up some tests and see if there is an improvement. I could run something similar to what we did with AE/HTAE testing.
Is there any progress on this topic?
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