A key issue of the industrialization of microalgae-to-biofuel processes is the characterization/improvement of unit operations involved in the downstream process. Typically, the process includes: biomass harvesting and concentration, oil extraction, transesterification, and fatty acid methyl-esters (FAMEs) purification. This work regards the assessment of a cost-effective flowsheet for the production of biodiesel from microalgal lipid fraction. The study was based on approximated cost-estimation methods integrated with the simulation software Aspen Plus®. Several scenarios were investigated regarding the main steps of the biodiesel production process. The attention was focused on sections dedicated to: the extraction of the lipid fraction from aqueous solution, the lipid transesterification, and the recover and concentration of both FAMEs and glycerol. Features of the produced FAMEs were set according to the ENI EN 14213 and ENI EN 14214 standards. Main assumptions of the simulation were: i) the triglycerides (TAGs) fraction of microalgae set at 25%w; ii) free fatty acids (FFA) <0.05%w. The production cost for unit of biodiesel mass was adopted as objective function. The attention was focused on the assessment of the share to process costs related to each process step.

A techno-economic analysis of biodiesel production by transesterification of microalgal lipids

OLIVIERI, GIUSEPPE;GARGANO, IMMACOLATA;MARZOCCHELLA, ANTONIO;SALATINO, PIERO
2013

Abstract

A key issue of the industrialization of microalgae-to-biofuel processes is the characterization/improvement of unit operations involved in the downstream process. Typically, the process includes: biomass harvesting and concentration, oil extraction, transesterification, and fatty acid methyl-esters (FAMEs) purification. This work regards the assessment of a cost-effective flowsheet for the production of biodiesel from microalgal lipid fraction. The study was based on approximated cost-estimation methods integrated with the simulation software Aspen Plus®. Several scenarios were investigated regarding the main steps of the biodiesel production process. The attention was focused on sections dedicated to: the extraction of the lipid fraction from aqueous solution, the lipid transesterification, and the recover and concentration of both FAMEs and glycerol. Features of the produced FAMEs were set according to the ENI EN 14213 and ENI EN 14214 standards. Main assumptions of the simulation were: i) the triglycerides (TAGs) fraction of microalgae set at 25%w; ii) free fatty acids (FFA) <0.05%w. The production cost for unit of biodiesel mass was adopted as objective function. The attention was focused on the assessment of the share to process costs related to each process step.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/562902
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