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Investigation of oil extraction from non-food sunflower seeds and meats for future jet fuel production

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  131582166,  2013 Kansas City, Missouri, July 21 - July 24, 2013. (doi: @2013
Authors:   Xianhui Zhao, Lin Wei, James Julson, Wangda Qu, Chunkai Shi
Keywords:   Sunflower oilseeds; vegetable oil; jet fuel; frequency; oil extraction efficiency.

Biofuel is an alternative to fossil fuels with benefits of less impact on environment, national energy security, and rural economic growth. Fuel ethanol and biodiesel industries have grown fast all over the world in recent years. However, very fewer biofuels have been applied in aviation fuels because there are still many technical challenges for biofuels meeting the strict requirement of aviation fuels, such as low temperature, fluidity, high energy density, compatibility with materials of aircraft engine, etc. This study is aiming on exploring a sustainable pathway of jet fuel production from non-food vegetable oils. The Jet fuels produced could be applied in commercial airplanes or navy and air force aircrafts. Oil extraction from oilseeds is a critical step in the pathway. The tests of oil extraction from non-food sunflower seeds, sunflower meats, and fine sunflower meats were conducted by using a cold press in the study. The frequency controlling screw rotating speed of the cold press and processing temperature were discussed. The characterization of the raw oils produced was carried out. The effects of frequency and temperatures on oil properties such as density, pH value, viscosity, moisture content, CHNO contents, and organic compounds were examined. Oil remained in the processing residual meals was also determined by using solvent extraction method. The results show that higher oil extraction efficiency was obtained at related lower frequency. Processing temperatures had significant effects on the cold press performance. When the temperature was higher than 90°C or lower than 40°C, the cold press couldn’t work properly. The highest oil extraction efficiency for sunflower seeds, sunflower meats and fine sunflower meats in the tests were 75.67%, 89.74% and 83.19% respectively. Though further study is needed for the improvement of processing cost and efficiency, cold press could be one of efficient methods for oil extraction from various non-food oilseeds.

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