Speed of sound and isentropic bulk modulus of alkyl monoesters at elevated temperatures and pressures

Tat M. E., Van Gerpen J.

JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN OIL CHEMISTS SOCIETY, vol.80, no.12, pp.1249-1256, 2003 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 80 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2003
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11746-003-0850-6
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1249-1256
  • Keywords: alkyl esters, biodiesel, bulk modulus, compressibility, density, diesel engine, diesel fuel, fuel injection, physical properties, speed of sound, PURE WATER, VEGETABLE-OILS, ATMOSPHERIC-PRESSURE, ULTRASONIC VELOCITY, BIODIESEL, TRIGLYCERIDES
  • Eskisehir Osmangazi University Affiliated: Yes


Biodiesel is a biodegradable, sulfur-free, oxygenated, and renewable alternative diesel fuel consisting of the alkyl monoesters of FA from vegetable oils and animal fats. Biodiesel can be used in existing diesel engines without significant modifications. However, differences in physical properties between biodiesel and petroleum-based diesel fuel may change the engine's fuel injection timing and combustion characteristics. These altered physical and chemical properties also may cause the exhaust emissions and performance to differ from the optimized settings chosen by the engine manufacturer. In particular, the density, speed of sound, and isentropic bulk modulus have a significant effect on the fuel injection system and combustion. The objective of this study was to measure these three properties for biodiesel (and the pure esters that are the constituents of biodiesel) at temperatures from 20 to 100degreesC and at pressures from atmospheric to 32.5 MPa. Ten different biodiesel fuels, 16 different pure FA esters, three hydrocarbons, and one diesel fuel were tested. The measured values of density, speed of sound, and isentropic bulk modulus are presented. Correlations between pressure and temperature are demonstrated. Speed of sound and isentropic bulk modulus tend to increase as the degree of unsaturation increases and as the chain length increases. However, density increased with shorter chain length and decreased with saturation.