What is released in the air when biodiesel is burned?
Biodiesel is a fuel which is produced from vegetable oils and animal fat. Given the finite quantity of fossil fuels, including petroleum oil and the generation of greenhouse gases (such as carbon dioxide, etc.) from combustion of these fuels, a lot of emphasis is being placed on biodiesel and other biodegradable and low emission fuel options. Biodiesel can be used as a fuel at 100% content or can be added up to 20% concentration in regular diesel.
On combustion, biodiesel generates carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, particulate matter, air toxics and nitrogen oxides (or NOx). It has been found experimentally that at 20% or 100% mix, biodiesel generates less emissions as compared to diesel, except for NOx (biodiesel generates more NOx emissions than diesel). Biodiesel also has less energy content as compared to diesel. Additionally, there are a number of other issues associated with generation of biodiesel, such as cost, feedstock consumption, etc., that need to be tackled before it can help in cleaning our air.
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