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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2017, Article ID 4190818, 9 pages
Research Article

Response Surface Methodology for Biodiesel Production Using Calcium Methoxide Catalyst Assisted with Tetrahydrofuran as Cosolvent

1Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900, Thailand
2Center of Excellence-Oil Palm, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900, Thailand
3Center for Advance Studies in Tropical Natural Resource, National Research University, Kasetsart University, Bangkok 10900, Thailand

Correspondence should be addressed to Vittaya Punsuvon;

Received 15 March 2017; Accepted 12 June 2017; Published 19 July 2017

Academic Editor: Raj K. Gupta

Copyright © 2017 Nichaonn Chumuang and Vittaya Punsuvon. 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.


The present study was performed to optimize a heterogeneous calcium methoxide (Ca(OCH3)2) catalyzed transesterification process assisted with tetrahydrofuran (THF) as a cosolvent for biodiesel production from waste cooking oil. Response surface methodology (RSM) with a 5-level-4-factor central composite design was applied to investigate the effect of experimental factors on the percentage of fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) conversion. A quadratic model with an analysis of variance obtained from the RSM is suggested for the prediction of FAME conversion and reveals that 99.43% of the observed variation is explained by the model. The optimum conditions obtained from the RSM were 2.83 wt% of catalyst concentration, 11.6 : 1 methanol-to-oil molar ratio, 100.14 min of reaction time, and 8.65% v/v of THF in methanol concentration. Under these conditions, the properties of the produced biodiesel satisfied the standard requirement. THF as cosolvent successfully decreased the catalyst concentration, methanol-to-oil molar ratio, and reaction time when compared with biodiesel production without cosolvent. The results are encouraging for the application of Ca(OCH3)2 assisted with THF as a cosolvent for environmentally friendly and sustainable biodiesel production.