Synthesis of Biokerosene through Electrochemical Hydrogenation of Terpene Hydrocarbons from Turpentine Oil

Tedi Hudaya, Ongky Widjaja, Antonius Rionardi, Tatang Hernas Soerawidjaja


Indonesia possesses great potential for developing renewable resources as alternative fuels. For example, turpentine oil obtained from Pinus merkusii, which contains mostly monoterpene hydrocarbons (C10H16). The oil is highly suitable to be processed for biokerosene or even jet biofuel. It consists of hydrocarbons within the range of C10 to C15. However, it contains insufficient H and thus needs to be upgraded. In the present work, electrochemical hydrogenation was used for upgrading. In the electrochemical cell, stainless steel, silver, and carbon were used alternately for the anode, while copper and silver Raschig rings were used for the cathode. An electrolyte solution of cuprous ammonium formate was utilized not only as a source of H but also to draw the unsaturated hydrocarbons into the aqueous phase. The electrolyte : oil ratio (up to 2:1), electrolyte concentration (between 0.4 and 2 M) and reaction time were varied throughout the experiments. The bromine number (unsaturation level) of the turpentine oil, which was initially 1,86 (mole Br2/mole), was lowered significantly to 0.69-0.90. Promising increase of smoke point values were observed from 11 mm to 16-24 mm, indicating a higher H content of the processed oil, thus making it suitable as a substitute for petroleum kerosene.

Full Text:



Eggersdorfer, M., Terpenes, Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, 35, pp. 653-668, 2003.

Gscheidmeier, M. & Fleig, H., Turpentines, Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, A 27, pp. 267-280, 1996.

Bridge, A.G., Hydrogen Processing, Handbook of Petroleum Refining Processes, R.A. Meyers (Ed.), 2nd ed., McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, United States, pp. 14.1-14.68, 1997.

Hudaya, T., Liana & Seorawidjaja, T.H., A Study on Low Temperature and Pressure Hydrogenation of Cyclopropenoid-Group Containing Non-Edible Oil for Biodiesel Feedstock, Energy Procedia, 32, p. 209-215, 2013.

Hadiah, F., Irawati, Prakoso, T., Subagjo & Seorawidjaja, T.H., Catalytic Transfer-Hydrogenation of Fatty Oil, Proceedings of the 5th Sriwijaya International Seminar on Energy and Environmental Science and Technology, Palembang, 10-11 September, 2014.

Yusem, G.J., & Pintauro, P.N., The Electrocatalytic Hydrogenation of Soybean Oil, Journal of American Oil Chemist Society, 69(5), pp. 399-404, 1992.

Mondal, K. & Lalvani, S.B., Mediator-assisted Electrochemical Hydrogenation of Soybean Oil, Chemical Engineering Science, 58, pp. 2643-2656, 2003.

Mondal, K. & Lalvani, S.B., Electrochemical Hydrogenation of Canola Oil Using a Hydrogen Transfer Agent, Journal of American Oil Chemist Society, 80(11), pp. 1135-1141, 2003.

Mondal, K. & Lalvani, S.B., Low Temperature Soybean Oil Hydrogenation by An Electrochemical Process, Journal of Food Engineering, 84, pp. 526-533, 2008.

Santosa, R.P., Hudaya, T. & Soerawidjaja, T.H., Electrochemical Hydrogenation of Terpenic Hydrocarbons, National Chemical Engineering Conference, Catholic Parahyangan University, Bandung, 25 April 2012. (Text in Indonesian)

Indonesian State Owned Forestry Enterprise, Perhutani Annual Report 2012: Consolidation Business Process towards Excellent Perhutani, (12 November 2015).

Jones, David S.J. & Pujado, P.R., (Eds.), Handbook of Petroleum Processing, Springer, 2008.



  • There are currently no refbacks.