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Enzyme Research
Volume 2011, Article ID 432746, 7 pages
Research Article

Estolides Synthesis Catalyzed by Immobilized Lipases

1Escola de Química, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Avenida Athos da Silveira Ramos, 149, 21949-909 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
2PPGEQ, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Rua São Francisco Xavier, 524, PHLC, IQ, sl. 427, 20559-900 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
3Petróleo Brasileiro, and Petrobras Biocombustível S. A., Avenida Presidente Vargas, 3131, Cidade Nova, 20210-030 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
4PDAB/HPE, CENPES/PETROBRAS, Avenida Horácio Macedo, 950, 21941-915 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

Received 13 January 2011; Revised 6 March 2011; Accepted 7 April 2011

Academic Editor: D. M. G. Freire

Copyright © 2011 Erika C. G. Aguieiras et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Estolides are vegetable-oil-based lubricants obtained from oleic acid or any source of hydroxy fatty acids. In this work, the estolides synthesis from oleic acid and methyl ricinoleate (biodiesel from castor oil), using immobilized commercial lipases (Novozym 435, Lipozyme RM-IM, and Lipozyme TL-IM) in a solvent-free medium was investigated. Acid value was used to monitor the reaction progress by determining the consumption of acid present in the medium. Novozym 435 showed the best performance. Water removal improved the conversion. Novozym 435 was more active at atmospheric pressure. Novozym 435 was reused four times with conversion reaching 15% after the fourth reaction at 80°C. Estolides produced under the reaction conditions used in this work presented good properties, such as, low temperature properties as pour point (−24°C), viscosity (23.9 cSt at 40°C and 5.2 cSt at 100°C), and viscosity index (153).