Methes Energies intro's PP-MEC catalyst, inks manufacturing deal

By Ron Kotrba | September 02, 2014

Methes Energies introduced its new biodiesel pretreatment process centered on a noncorrosive liquid catalyst it calls PP-MEC during an Aug. 28 Biodiesel Magazine webinar titled “Biodiesel Technology: Enhancing Profit through New Processing Techniques.” 

Feedstock with up to 70 percent free fatty acids and less than 0.2 percent moisture is combined with methanol and 1,000 parts per million (ppm) of PP-MEC catalyst in a high-pressure reaction vessel. The process temperatures are often less than 480 degrees Fahrenheit with pressures less than 1,000 pounds per square inch (psi). The yield after the first step is 92 percent biodiesel, 7 percent monoglycerides, 2 percent diglycerides and glycerin with no salts or soaps. The reaction time is 5 to 15 minutes. After glycerin separation, 1 percent sodium methylate by weight is added for base transesterification of the remaining glycerides.

For producers using distillers corn oil feedstock from ethanol plants, the PP-MEC pretreatment process lightens the color and requires no wax removal or degumming. The separation phase following pretreatment is easy because PP-MEC does not create an emulsion layer.

The company says its new pretreatment process can save biodiesel producers 8 to 10 percent on overall catalyst costs.

Dorf Ketal Speciality Catalysts LLC will be the exclusive manufacturer of Methes Energies’ PP-MEC catalyst. “We are very pleased with our relationship with Dorf Ketal,” said John Loewen, chief operating officer of Methes. “The fact that they can manufacture our PP-MEC catalyst is great and gives us the peace of mind that we were looking for. I believe that the market potential is enormous for this new process so we wanted to make sure that we had a catalyst manufacturer that would be able to follow our growth not only in North America but around the world.”

Click here to access the free, recorded webinar in its entirety.

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