Biodiesel researchers need to understand the optimal conditions involved in the production of biodiesel from readily available biological sources, as several research works have reported on biodiesel production. Therefore, this paper emphasizes specifically, the process parameters involved in biodiesel production and how they affect biodiesel yields. These parameters include, but not limited to the feedstock selection, catalyst type to use, free fatty acid, temperature, kinetics, hydrodynamics and reactor conditions. In biodiesel synthesis, a high fatty acid methyl ester yield of up to 100%w/w at 60 oC has been reported, which occurred with a methanol to oil molar ratio of 3.75, and 60 min reaction time. Homogeneous catalysts seems promising for the production of biodiesel, although they possess disposal challenges and reusability issues. In addition, carbon-based catalysts from natural sources have been used to resolve the presence of free fatty acids in biodiesel synthesis that results in the formation of soap. These carbon-derived catalysts prove their efficiency when modified with acids. The reactor suitable for biodiesel reaction, assume several configurations, like the batch, fixed bed and semi-batch configurations, with their respective reaction conditions. Furthermore, in the design of a hydrodynamic cavitation reactor operating on the rotor-stator mechanism, research has shown that the ratio of rotor to stator diameter Dr/Ds is maintained at 0.73 for efficient operation. Hence, a proper understanding of the process chemistry and techniques involved in biodiesel synthesis would ensure a high desired yield and sustainable process route.
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