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International Biodiesel Day is an annual celebration of the creation and development of biodiesel, a renewable alternative fuel to petroleum or synthetic diesel. It is a sustainable product based on lipids such as vegetable oils or animal fats. Biodiesel Day is held on the 10th of August.
See the fact file below for more information on the International Biodiesel Day or alternatively, you can download our 23-page International Biodiesel Day worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Biodiesel Day is celebrated annually on the 10th of August and seeks to celebrate the role of biodiesel in helping the environment, supporting agricultural workers, and developing solutions for a sustainable future.
- In the 1890s, Rudolf Christian Karl Diesel invented the diesel engine, also known as the compression ignition engine. Prior to his invention, the steam engine was the major industrial power source.
- Although Diesel was the first to actually build the initial model of a diesel engine, two scientists in the 1850s had already designed a similar engine that would mainly utilize vegetable oil. E. Duffy and
J. Patrick conceptualized the transesterification process that would produce the substance we now know as biodiesel. However, it wasn’t until Diesel’s invention that this process was applied.
- On August 10, 1893, in Augsburg, Germany, Rudolf Diesel showcased the prime model of his engine fueled by peanut oil. That is why August 10 has been declared as the official date for International Biodiesel Day.
- “The use of vegetable oils for engine fuels may seem insignificant today, but such oils may become, in the course of time, as important as petroleum and the coal-tar products of the present time.”
Rudolf Diesel in his 1912 speech
- The first run on August 10th was not successful. After a series of developments, the engine successfully ran on February 17, 1897. Diesel was able to demonstrate that the diesel engine ran at 26.2% efficiency, which was greater than the 10% efficiency of the steam engine.
- Diesel made the engine with biomass vegetable oil fuel in mind but diesel engine manufacturers in the 1920s did not follow that path. They utilized petroleum diesel or petrodiesel because of its cheaper production compared to that of biofuel. The downside is that petrodiesel has resulted in higher pollution costs.
- During the 1920s and 1930s, continuous tests had been made on biodiesel not just in the United States but in other countries such as the United Kingdom, Italy, France, China, Japan, Germany, Portugal and Brazil.
- Despite the growing interest in biofuel, the commercialization of petrodiesel resulted in the decrease of biodiesel production and consumption.
All About Biodiesel
- Biodiesel is a biodegradable, renewable and non-toxic fuel that is used as an alternative to petroleum diesel. The main source of biodiesel is oil crops, specifically soybean, flax, rapeseed, mustard, palm oil, sunflower, hemp and waste vegetable oils.
- Biodiesel is made through the process of transesterification. Transesterification is the chemical reaction of lipids or fatty acids with alcohol to produce fatty acid esters that make up biodiesel.
- Without transesterification, straight vegetable oil (SVO) can be used as fuel. However, due to its high viscosity, which can result in engine damage, it is discouraged.
- Biodiesel can be used purely. It can also be blended with petrodiesel. Blends of biodiesel are categorized into 4 types: B100 (100% biodiesel), B20 (20% biodiesel), B5 (5% biodiesel), and B2 (2% biodiesel).
- Biodiesel has multiple uses and can be used in the same machinery fueled by petroleum fuel. It can be used as vehicular fuel, heating oil, oil spillage solvent and generator fuel.
- Car manufacturers Chrysler, Volkswagen, Mercedes Benz and Chevrolet have each released car models capable of utilizing blended biodiesel, mostly B5. The 2014 Chevy Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel can be fueled by B20.
- Aircraft operating companies United Airlines and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines have both become open to the use of biofuel in aeroplanes. United Airlines flew the first commercial biodiesel-fueled flight on Solajet. Solajet is an algae-derived jet fuel developed by biotechnology company Solazyme.
- Virgin Trains, a train operating company in the UK, ran the UK’s first biodiesel train on B20 fuel.
- Bioheat fuel, a blend of biofuel and conventional heating oil, can be used in home oil-fired boilers and commercial boilers.
- Biodiesel can be used as an oil spillage solvent. Laboratory tests have shown that it is capable of dissolving crude oil. It is considered by some to be a more efficient tool in shoreline cleanups.
- A B100-fueled generator successfully ran in 2001 at the University of California, Riverside.
- From 1978 to 1996, the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory tested algae as a biodiesel source.
- In the 1990s, France locally produced biodiesel using rapeseed oil and called it “diester”.
- The use of biodiesel has increased in the United States due to the passage of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. All transport fuel suppliers in the UK are obliged to include 5% biofuel due to the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation. In Canada, the Canadian Environmental Protection Act Bill requires gasoline to contain 5% renewable fuel and diesel to contain 2% renewable fuel.
- In 2007, Disneyland fueled their park trains with 98% biodiesel. In that same year, the British Royal Train completed its first run on 100% biodiesel (B100).
- France and Germany are the top biodiesel producers in the world.
International Biodiesel Day Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about International Biodiesel Day across 23 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use International Biodiesel Day worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the International Biodiesel Day which is an annual celebration of the creation and development of biodiesel, a renewable alternative fuel to petroleum or synthetic diesel. It is a sustainable product based on lipids such as vegetable oils or animal fats. Biodiesel Day is held on the 10th of August.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- International Biodiesel Day Facts
- Diesel: The Inventor and the Engine
- Pop-up Timeline
- Expand Your Vocabulary
- Biodiesel vs. Petrodiesel
- Biofuel Source Hunt
- Biodiesel Blends
- More than Transport Fuel
- Car Manufacturers
- Biodiesel is Back!
- Biodiesel Campaign
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Link will appear as International Biodiesel Day Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, August 20, 2018
Use With Any Curriculum
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