Experimental and Theoretical Routes Towards Assessing the Potential of Emulsified Palm Biodiesel as an Alternative to Diesel Fuel

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Diesel engines, the most fuel-efficient combustion devices, are widely used in various sectors such as agriculture, transportation and industry. Diesel vehicles are counted up to 40% and 65% of the total vehicles in India and world, respectively. A higher price of petrol in India will cause these numbers to increase further. However, the public has ample disquiet about the emission released by diesel engines. The emissions from diesel engines namely, black smoke, hydrocarbon, nitrogen oxides, carbon, sulfur etc., are often converted into other lethal materials that harm both ecology and human welfare. The most effective means is to trim down the emission level right at its root. Biodiesel, methyl or ethyl esters of biofuel, is a renewable, ecologically benign fuel and has been regarded as a promising alternative fuel for diesel engines. This is because biodiesel provides superior lubricity, bio-degradability, and low toxicity than diesel. However, oxidized biodiesels forms higher nitrogen oxide (NOX) when burnt in diesel engines. It is seen that exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) can shrink NOX, but rises particulate emission. Again, oxygen enrichment does the reverse. When both of these methods are employed, they raise cost, repairs and added energy supply. Further, lesser calorific value of biodiesel causes lower efficiency than diesel. The abovementioned problems can be suitably resolved by applying a method, emulsification of biodiesel. In emulsification, two or more immiscible fluids are mixed together such as water and fuel oil. When sprayed through a nozzle, the emulsified fluid is atomized into fine liquid droplets. Owing to its lower boiling point than fuel oil, water droplets reach their boiling point first after absorbing an ample amount of heat. The vaporized water then blows up the oil layer, forms smaller oil droplets, and raises the oil surface to volume ratio. This is known as As a result, a stronger degree of mixing amid the atomized oil droplets and the surrounding air takes place, resulting improved combustion efficiency. Hence, the fuel intake drops, which in turn, boosts the efficiency.
Supervisor: Ujjwal Kumar Saha