Journal of Oil Palm Research Vol. 25  2013 August p.  253-264

Performance of polymeric membranes for phospholipid removal from residual palm fibre oil/hexane miscella

Author(s): RUSNANI Abd Majid* ; ABDUL WAHAB Mohamad** ; CHOO Yuen May*

Palm pressed fibre, a by-product from the processing of crude palm oil contains about 5%-8% residual oil (on dry basis). The oil contains a high amount of minor components such as phospholipids, carotenes and vitamin E. This study investigates the ability of polymeric membranes to remove phospholipid from residual palm fibre oil/hexane miscella. The performance of 10 kDa polyethersulphone (PES), 20 kDa PES and 30 kDa polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membranes were evaluated. A detailed evaluation on 30 kDa PVDF showed that permeate flux increases with the increase of operating pressure, temperature and agitation speed. Increasing operating pressure from 2 to 6 bar with a temperature of 40°C and speed of 300 rpm resulted in the retention of phospholipids from 81% to 95%. The resistance of the membrane due to concentration polarisation ranged from 30.6 to 97.0 x 1012 m-1 which gave 79% – 84% of total resistance values indicating significant influence on the permeate flux. A complete 23 experimental design indicated statistically that the increased pressure, temperature and agitation speed resulted in a higher permeate flux. An increase in pressure and agitation speed also increased the retention of phospholipid. However, the regression model obtained from this study showed that the temperature had a negative effect on the retention of phospholipid.

Keywords: , , , ,

Author Information
* Malaysian Palm Oil Board, 6, Persiaran Institusi Bandar Baru Bangi, 43000 Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia.

** Department of Process and Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering & Built Environment, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43650 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia.

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