Biodiesel is a methyl ester obtained by transesterification of vegetable oil. As the result of transesterification, vegetable oil gains similar properties as petroleum-derived diesel fuels. A by-product of the transesterification process is the production of glycerol (also known as glycerine or glycerin). Usually rapeseed oil is used as a raw material and ester derived from rapeseed oil is called rape methyl ester (RME). Biodiesel has a number of benefits compared to petroleum diesel:
Tests have shown that biodiesel has very good lubricating properties and it reduces wear on the engine and heating system. Even if to add only 5-10% of bio fuel to petroleum diesel, it significantly reduces the problems and wear on the heating system and engine caused by the inadequate lubricity of poor quality standard fuel. Also, the use of biodiesel lowers the noise level caused by the engine and the high pressure injection pump.
More complete combustion
As biodiesel molecule contains oxygen, the amount of soot produced during combustion is smaller. Due to this, the engine is cleaner. Of course, the environment and people’s health also benefit.
Biodiesel is a very good detergent to clean oil stains. It also washes the biodiesel fuel tank and deposits of residue in the heating system. Also, when spilt on clothes, biodiesel does not emit the so-called “tractor” smell as does petroleum diesel and the smell of the engine exhaust fumes resembles more the smell of cooking French fries.
Reduced fire risk
The flash point of quality biodiesel is somewhere around 160 ° C, more than 100 ° C higher than that of the fossil fuel. This helps to prevent the biodiesel from igniting as easily as fossil fuel in case of fuel leak.
Biodiesel, a plant-based fuel, is considerably less harmful to nature than petroleum diesel. Due to the minimum content of sulphur in biodiesel, harmful sulphur compounds are not emitted into the environment. Biodiesel is considered to be renewable energy because it is produced from vegetable oils and oil crops can be grown repeatedly. Biodiesel use helps to keep the circulation of CO² in balance. The amount of CO² emitted during combustion is equal to the amount of CO2 consumed by the growing oil plant and that is why the total amount of CO2 in the atmosphere does not increase. The by-products of biodiesel production - rape cake and glycerol are widely used in agricultural and cosmetic industries.
When using biodiesel, users must observe all technical requirements concerning biodiesel.