Ficus ulmifolia seeds and theobroma cacao husks as alternative feedstock for biodiesel

Date of Publication


Document Type

Bachelor's Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering


Gokongwei College of Engineering


Chemical Engineering

Thesis Adviser

Luis Frias Razon
Cynthia F. Madrazo

Defense Panel Member

Arnel B. Beltran
Vergel C. Bungay


A wider range of alternative feedstock is vital to reduce the consumption of commercial petrodiesels and raw materials (agricultural crops and vegetable oil, animal fats, etc.) competing with the food and medicine industries. To resolve the issues stated, this study assessed the fatty acid profiles from the oils of Ficus Ulmifolia seeds and Theobroma Cacao husks (known in the Philippines as 2is-is3 and cacao respectively) for their feasibility as alternative feedstock for biodiesel production. This study tackled the extraction and determination of the oil content from the plants, determination of Fatty Acid (FAME) composition of the methylated oils, the calculation of the biodiesel characteristics of the oils, and the comparison of results with American, Japanese, European and Philippine standards. The oils were extracted using a Soxhlet Extractor using hexane as the solvent. The 2is-is3 seeds contained 4.25% (w/w) oil, while the cacao husks contained 2.25% (w/w) oil on a dry basis. Using gas chromatography equipped with a flame ionization detector (GC-FID), the methylated oils were analyzed for their fatty acid methyl esters (FAME) composition. The GC-FID results showed that 2is-is3 seed oil is rich in oleic acid with FAME weight of 46.96%, while the cacao husk oil is rich in palmitic acid with FAME weight of 39.51%. The fatty acid profiles were then used to predict biodiesel properties based on calculations using the empirical equations provided and comparison with American (ASTM D6751), European (EN 14214), Japanese (JASO M360), and Philippine (PNS2020:2003) standards. It was computed that the FAME from both plant oils meet the criteria specified in the standards, except for the saponification value, density and lower heating value which did not reach the minimum requirement. Overall, both the 2is-is3 seed oil and cacao husk oil have low oil yield, but have properties that meet the standard biodiesel properties. The group recommends more studies on the cacao husk because it is very abundant despite its low oil content.

Abstract Format






Accession Number


Shelf Location

Archives, The Learning Commons, 12F, Henry Sy Sr. Hall

Physical Description

viii, 89 leaves : illustrations (some color) ; 28 cm. + 1 disc ; 4 3/4 inches.


Raw materials; Theobroma; Cacao; Feedstock; Biodiesel fuels

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