Production of biodiesel from castor oil using iron (II) doped zinc oxide nanocatalyst

Volume 98, December 2016, Pages 101–107

Special Issue: New Horizons in Biofuels Production and Technologies

Edited By Ashok Pandey, Duu Jong Lee, Samir K. Khanal and Reeta Rani Singhania


Synthesized iron (II) zinc oxide nanocomposite was confirmed by XRD analysis.

VSM analysis confirmed the magnetic property of iron (II) zinc oxide catalyst.

Iron (II) zinc oxide catalyst was effective for biodiesel production from castor oil.

Produced biodiesel was confirmed as fatty acid methyl ester by GC–MS.


The depletion of fossil fuels has caused the price of petroleum to rise remarkably and created need for alternative energy such as biodiesel. In the present study, the biodiesel was produced from castor oil using ferromagnetic zinc oxide nanocomposite as heterogeneous catalyst for transesterification reaction. Single phase of nanocatalyst were confirmed by X-Ray Diffraction analysis. The spherical shape of the aggregated nanocatalyst was observed in Scanning Electron Microscopy. Magnetic properties were analysed using vibrating sample magnetometer. Atomic Force Microscopic analysis revealed the larger surface area and roughness of nanocatalyst. The biodiesel yield of 91% (w/w) was obtained in 50 min at 55 °C with 14 wt % catalyst loading and 12:1 methanol/oil ratio and was confirmed by Gas chromatograph with Mass Spectrometer. The result showed that the iron (II) doped ZnO nanocatalyst is a promising catalyst for the production of biodiesel via heterogeneous catalytic transesterification under milder reaction conditions.


  • Heterogeneous catalyst;
  • Biodiesel;
  • Castor oil;
  • Ferromagnetism;
  • Zinc oxide nanocomposite

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