DEVELOPING BIOFUELS PRODUCTION FROM FOOD INDUSTRY WASTES IN THE RURAL AREA OF KENYA

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ABSTRACT

In this thesis the possibility of producing ethanol, from local food industry’s sugary fruits, berries and fruit juices, for the production of biodiesel, is determined. This ethanol can also be used as a fuel for motor vehicles. Ethanol is supposed to be produced by fermenting the sugary crops with the presence of yeast. In suitable an-aerobic conditions the yeast will convert sugar into ethanol and carbon dioxide. After the fermenting process the solid particles will be removed. After separation the ethanol will be distilled from the water and the other content, into the required alcohol content. After distillation and dehydration process this ethanol can be used in biodiesel production or as a fuel for vehicles.


The goal of the experiment was to see if the production of ethanol is possible.

Result: The ethanol production from sugary fruits and fruit juices is possible.

In this thesis the attributes of different kind of solid fuels that are used in households, e.g. the gross calorific value, lower heating value, moisture, ash content and flue gas content, are defined. The fuels used are carbon-ized husks from croton nut, husks from croton nut that are compressed into briquettes, typical Kenyan firewood and typical Kenyan charcoal.


The goal of the analysis was to determine if the croton husk briquette and the carbonized croton husks are safer fuels than the original fuels.


Results: Charcoal has better lower calorific value than the Carbonized croton husk but the carbonized husks pro-duce less dangerous flue gas than charcoal. The properties of Croton husk briquettes are almost equal to fire-wood.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

1          INTRODUCTION
            1.1       EMPLOYER AND FACILITIES

2          INTRODUCTION TO ETHANOL PRODUCTION

3          FERMENTATION
            3.1       Sugar bearing feedstock
            3.2       Starchy Crops
            3.3       Cellulosic biomass

4          DISTILLATION

5          DEHYDRATION

6          EXPERIMENT EQUIPMENT

7          EXPERIMENTS
            7.1       First experiment
            7.2       Second experiment

8          END OF ETHANOL EXPERIMENTS AND CONCLUSION

9          SOLID FUEL INTRODUCTION

10        FUELS
            10.1     Firewood (Pine)
            10.2     Croton husk briquette
            10.3     Charcoal
            10.4     Carbonized croton husk

11        FUEL ANALYSIS METHODS
            11.1     Higher heating value or gross calorific value
            11.2     Lower heating value
            11.3     Moisture
            11.4     Ash content
            11.5     Flue gas emissions

12        EQUIPMENT AND METHODS

13        RESULTS

14        CONCLUSIONS

15        CONCLUSIONS AND PROPOSALS FOR THE CLIENT
REFERENCES
ANNEX 1:  FIGURE OF THE ASH SAMPLES
ANNEX 2: RESULT CERTIFICATES


1         INTRODUCTION

The client, Horizon Business Ventures, produces plant oil from many kind of different seeds. This plant oil is then processed into biodiesel by transesterification process, which requires ethanol or methanol. Currently the client doesn’t refine the plant oil into biodiesel due to high price of metha-nol and ethanol but rather sells the raw plant oil as it is with lower profit.

The client was looking for a cheaper alternative for high price methanol, so I proposed making the ethanol by ourselves out of fruit waste that local food industry was throwing away. So the goal of the project was to determine if ethanol can be produced from the fruit waste with fermentation method.

1.1      EMPLOYER AND FACILITIES
Horizon Business Ventures is a daughter company of Help Self Help Centre. Help Self Help Centre owns multiple companies including the food factory, which supplies the fruit waste.

The Horizon Business Ventures manufactures many different kinds of products, some of the prod-ucts are made using the waste from the biodiesel process. The products include:

-       Biodiesel

-       Crude plant oil (Croton)

-       Plant oils from different seeds

-       Soil fertilizer

-       Animal feed

-       Bio-Drop (for skin care)

-       Bio-Mist (crop spray)

-       Bio-Fume (liquid soil fertilizer)

-       Seed cake (for processing)

-       Husks from nuts (fertilizer)


The company is committed to manufacturing products which are environmentally friendly, safe and reasonably priced. Horizon Business Ventures also run a motel, bar and restaurant in its property. Facilities include:

-       Oil factory

-       Fertilizer and animal feed factory

-       3 warehouses

-       Motel


-       Bar and restaurant

2         INTRODUCTION TO ETHANOL PRODUCTION
Ethanol is an alcohol that has similar properties as gasoline, this makes ethanol a good contender to replace gasoline or at least an alternative fuel for blending. The densities of ethanol and gasoline are quite similar but the energy content of ethanol is about 30% lower. Since ethanol contains mo-lecular oxygen that promotes more complete combustion, the difference in energy content does not become a major concern at low level of alcohol blends in gasoline.

Ethanol is also used as a catalyst in transesterification process, which is one process to transform crude plant oil into biodiesel.

Depending on the type and nature of feedstock, the pre-processing steps or operations may differ but there are basically three processes that are common for all three types of feedstocks: (a) fer-mentation of the sugars into ethanol; (b) distillation to separate the aqueous ethanol (95%) from the fermented mash; and (c) dehydration to produce anhydrous ethanol (>99.5%) suitable for blending with gasoline. In the case of starchy and cellulosic feedstocks, pretreatment through sac-charification or hydrolysis is required in order to convert them to sugars that can be fermented by yeast into ethanol [Filemon.]


3         FERMENTATION

Fermentation is a series of chemical reactions that converts sugars to ethanol in the presence of suitable strain of yeast, which feed on the sugars. Ethanol and carbon dioxide are produced as the sugar (glucose) is consumed. [Filemon.]

Ethanol can be produced by the fermentation of carbohydrates from various feedstocks. The feed-stocks fall under three main categories: sugar bearing feedstocks such as sugar cane and fruits, starchy feedstocks such as cassava or corn, and cellulosic feedstocks such as wood and agricultural residues such as bagasse. The production technologies for the first two types of feedstocks are fully mature and well-developed and are commercially available from various suppliers. However, the processing of cellulosic materials into ethanol using either acid or enzymatic hydrolysis is not yet fully developed commercially but is rapidly becoming technically and economically viable [Filemon.]

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This is a General Thesis for both Undergraduate & Postgraduate Studies. The complete research material plus questionnaire and references can be obtained at an affordable price of N3,000 within Nigerian or its equivalent in other currencies.


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