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Open Access Research article

Hydrolysis optimization and characterization study of preparing fatty acids from Jatropha curcas seed oil

Jumat Salimon*, Bashar Mudhaffar Abdullah and Nadia Salih

Author Affiliations

School of Chemical Sciences and Food Technology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia

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Chemistry Central Journal 2011, 5:67  doi:10.1186/1752-153X-5-67

Published: 1 November 2011

Abstract

Background

Fatty acids (FAs) are important as raw materials for the biotechnology industry. Existing methods of FAs production are based on chemical methods. In this study potassium hydroxide (KOH)-catalyzed reactions were utilized to hydrolysis Jatropha curcas seed oil.

Results

The parameters effect of ethanolic KOH concentration, reaction temperature, and reaction time to free fatty acid (FFA%) were investigated using D-Optimal Design. Characterization of the product has been studied using Fourier transforms infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), gas chromatography (GC) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The optimum conditions for maximum FFA% were achieved at 1.75M of ethanolic KOH concentration, 65°C of reaction temperature and 2.0 h of reaction time.

Conclusions

This study showed that ethanolic KOH concentration was significant variable for J. curcas seed oil hydrolysis. In a 18-point experimental design, FFA% of hydrolyzed J. curcas seed oil can be raised from 1.89% to 102.2%, which proved by FTIR and HPLC.