Influences of Marine Environment to the Characteristics of Palm Oil Biodiesel during Storage
Keywords:Biodiesel, Characteristic, Degradation, Marine, Microorganism
Biodiesel from palm oil is one of the alternative energies developed in Indonesia and has been implemented since 2018 for marine transportation, especially for ships. However, there are pertinent cases that experienced many obstacles related to the occurrence of gels, engine power reduction, blocking filters, and injection in the engine. The occurrence of those cases is due to the prolonged storage of biodiesel onboard of ships. During a significant storage process, periodic biodiesel monitoring is required which is difficult to do onboard. In this paper, a study on the physical/chemical characteristics of biodiesel and microbiological growth had been carried out in a controlled effect of the marine environment. Samples of biodiesel blends B20 were placed in locations near the sea and land base areas. It was found that there were significant changes in some chemical parameters of the biodiesel, such as flash point, viscosity, and acid number after 30 days. Microbiological growth, specifically bacteria, appeared on the 45th day of the outdoor-land sample. On the other hand, fungus growth on the out-door-sea was also detected on the same day. It suggested that the growth of microorganisms, growth of fungus and change in characteristics of the marine environment causes the degradation of biodiesel.