New Method of Turning Sewage Sludge into Biodiesel is Low-Cost, High-Yield
by Derek Markham (Treehugger) …A team of researchers in South Korea have developed a new process for converting the lipids in sewage sludge into biodiesel, at not only a lower cost than conventional biodiesel, but with much higher yields. The team, working out of the Research Institute of Industrial Science and Technology, found that the sewage sludge produced 2,200 times more lipids per gram than soybeans, and at a much lower cost.
“Each liter of lipids that the researchers extracted from sludge cost $0.03, while previously published data shows each liter from soybeans costs $0.80.” - C&EN
Impurities in the lipids from the sludge would have interfered with the catalytic process in the conventional production of biodiesel, so they developed a new method that could transform lipids with high amounts of free fatty acids (FFAs) or impurities using heat instead of catalysis. READ MORE and MORE (Chemical and Engineering News) Abstract