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Transesterification of sunflower oil on single step sol-gel made Al2O3 supported CaO catalysts: Effect of basic strength and basicity on turnover frequency
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The activities of single step sol-gel made calcium oxide on alumina catalysts were studied as a function of CaO loading, methanol/oil molar ratio and the amount of the catalyst in the transesterification of sunflower oil at 50°C. Also, the turnover frequency (TOF) of the catalysts was calculated to better understand the relationship between the basicity/basic strength and the catalytic activity. From volcano curve (TOF vs. basic strength), it was found that under 50°C and methanol/oil molar ratio of 9, 60% CaO/Al 2O 3 had the highest turnover frequency, 0.028s -1, whereas 85% CaO/Al 2O 3 showed the highest biodiesel yield, ∼96.6%, but TOF obtained on it was 0.012s -1. It seemed that 60% CaO catalyst had the proper basic strength to obtain the highest TOF. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.