February 28, 2015, 12:05 am
What is Biodiesel? PDF Print E-mail

Rudolf DieselRudolf Diesel, the inventor of the diesel engine, created the engine to be powered by peanut and other vegetable oil. That was in the late 1800s before cheaper petroleum-based diesel fuel (petrodiesel) became widely available.

Biodiesel is produced from renewable plant or animal feedstocks containing fatty acids using a process of condensation called transesterification, and are the most common form of biofuel in Europe as a replacement for diesel.

Engine makers altered Rudolph Diesel’s original engine to suit petrodiesel. The ‘transesterification’ process was actually developed in order that the engines be able to use biodiesel again!

Biodiesel can be used as a fuel for vehicles in its pure form, but it is usually used as a blend to reduce levels of particulates, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons from diesel-powered vehicles.

(Photo from: www.carodiesel.com)