Sunday, April 1, 2007

First batch of biodiesel

Hello again-
Last Thursday we brewed our first batch of biodiesel (20 gallons), and I am proud to announce that it was a complete success. We had a few issues with the glycerol solidifying in the pipes, but once they were heated, the glycerol drained and we ended up with a good batch.

We used .5% magnesol by weight without heating and it seems to have sufficiently cleaned the biodiesel although it wasn't the super clean biodiesel that we were able to get using 2% magnesol. The centrifuge cleaned out the magnesol, but some residue was left in the bottom of the tank, which means that a cone-bottom tank will be necessary for optimality.

I have put 10 gallons of the clean biodiesel in my diesel truck, and after driving around with it yesterday (to pick up more components for the system), it seems to perform well. It seems that there is a slight power loss, but not enough to effect normal driving. The engine definately runs smoother and quieter, and the exhaust has the distinct smell of a fryer. We will be delivering the balance of the biodiesel to Plant Operations at Vanderbilt for testing in their equipment.

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