Of late, BioDiesel has been drawing a lot of attention as an environmental friendly alternative fuel.
Let us weigh up both BioDiesel and traditional diesel to better understand the difference between the two. While the molecular dimension of BioDiesel and conventional diesel is the same, the chemical structure differs. On account of this difference, there are significant disparities in the characteristics of the two fuels.
Lubricity: BioDiesel is more slippery than petroleum diesel. Hence, usage of BioDiesel also helps extend the engine’s lifespan. The oxygen present in BioDiesel gives it the property of lubricity.
Oxygen Levels: With respect to the oxygen levels, BioDiesel has an oxygen content that is usually 10 to 12 per cent more than petroleum diesel. Due to this, the pollution emission levels are relatively lower with BioDiesel.
Almost No Sulfur: As a matter of fact, BioDiesel has almost no sulfur. This makes it very safe for the environment, leading to little or no pollution from engines that use BioDiesel. The sulfur dioxide emissions are minimal and the sulfur levels of BioDiesel are lesser than what’s found in even ultra-low sulfur diesel.
Safety: BioDiesel’s flashpoint is higher than 150 degrees centigrade, while it’s around 52 degrees centigrade for petroleum diesel. Hence, BioDiesel is less combustible and therefore, safe to handle, store and transport.
Mileage: The trips made to the gas station will be fewer for vehicles that run on BioDiesel. This is because these vehicles run more miles per liter and prove to be economical when compared to automobiles running on conventional diesel.
Global Warming: While conventional diesel adds to the pollution, BioDiesel is an enabler in protecting our blue planet from the expanding clutches of global warming. Biodiesel produces less toxic pollutants and greenhouse gases than petroleum diesel. The carbon dioxide produced due to BioDiesel combustion is utilized by the crops, which are being used to produce the BioDiesel. Plants use carbon dioxide to perform photosynthesis. No harmful gases are released into the atmosphere and over a period of time, the air quality can improve significantly.
Energy Crisis: World peace has been endangered for years due to the energy crisis. With so many other pending matters, this issue is often left unaddressed by nations. But, a growing energy crisis can also result in hostility between countries. BioDiesel could offer a potential solution to such challenges. Nations could manufacture their own fuel locally and this will reduce the dependence on other countries. While the petroleum reserves of the world continue to diminish by the day, BioDiesel has emerged as a ray of hope for humanity.