Formulation And Production Of Alcohol From Palm Wine

Project and Seminar Material for Chemical Engineering

Formulation And Production Of Alcohol From Palm Wine


This research work was arrived as the formulation and production of ethanol (ethyl alcohol) from the fermentation of palm wine. A fresh palm wine was ated which was obtained from Emene in Enugu State. The characteristics that was tested before and after fermentation were; specific gravity, refractive index and PH value of the fermentated palm wine was first determined, after which samples were formulated for fermentation. The yeast that was used in the course of fermentation process was the baker’s yeast (sacchromycess Cerevisae). 10 samples of 400ml each of the palm wine were used for the fermentation process, with variations in their yeast content and days of fermentation. These were done under aerobic condition.

After fermentation, the samples were respectively distilled after fermentation with their corresponding values of; specific gravity, % by volume % by weight concentration and density of the distillates determined and recorded respectively. Further more, the distillates obtained were separated and added together accordingly to be re – distilled. Thus, their corresponding values of % by volume, % by weight, specific gravity of the re – distilled products were determine3de and recorded accordingly. From the result obtained, it shows that the minimum volume of alcohol obtained is 27.52% while the standard volume of alcohol required is 37% minimum. This standard volume of alcohol was gotten from standard organisation of Nigeria (SON).

Table of Content

  • Title page
  • Certification page
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of content

Chapter One

  • 1.0 Introduction
  • 1.1 Objective of the study
  • 1.2 Scope of the work
  • 1.3 Significance

Chapter Two

  • 2.0 Source of palm wine
  • 2.1 Nature or composition of palm wine
  • 2.2 Micro – organism in palm wine and its effect on alcohol production.
  • 2.3 Fermentation process
  • 2.3.1 Biological theory of fermentation
  • 2.3.2 Fermentation of carbohydrate to produce ethanol
  • 2.3.3 Factors that affect fermentation of palm oil
  • 2.4 Properties and uses of ethanol (ethyl alcohol)
  • 2.4.1 Physical properties of ethyl alcohol
  • 2.4.2 Chemical properties of ethanol
  • 2.4.3 Uses of ethanol
  • 2.5.0 Distillation: A separation process
  • 2.5.1 Batch distillation
  • 2.5.2 Flash distillation
  • 2.5.3 Continuous/Rectification distillation
  • Fractionating operation
  • Rectification and stipping combination
  • 2.6.0 Multi component distillation
  • 2.6.1 Two forms of multi component distillation
  • Azeotropic distillation
  • Extractive distillation
  • 2.6.2 Companion of Azeotropic and extractive distillation
  • 2.7.0 Low – pressure distillation
  • 2.8.0 Factors to consider in selecting a solvent during distillation operation

Chapter Three

  • 3.0 Experimental Analysis
  • 3.1 Collection Of Palm Wine Sample
  • 3.2 Experimental determination of variables during fermentation
  • 3.3 Experimental method
  • 3.4 Experimental result

Chapter Four

  • 4.0 Discussion

Chapter Five

  • 5.0 Conclusion

Chapter Six

  • 6.0 Recommendation

Chapter Seven

  • Appendix I
  • Appendix II
  • Appendix III
  • Appendix IV
  • Appendix V

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

The manufacture of alcohol by fermentation has bee3n known since amtignity, the4 main purpose being the preparation of alcoholic beverages like beer, wine etc, the raw material is palm wine and any feed stuffy rich in carbohydrates, e.g wheat, barley, cassava, grapes, yams, apple, corn, rich, potates, banana and plantains. Palm wine is made from the gap at the raffia palm or the oil palm which contain fermentable carbohydrate in solution. It owes its white appearance to a suspension of yeast. It’s fermentation therefore does not require the addition of yeast from an outside source. Fermentation is in fact very rapid at ordinary te4mperaturein tropical countries with the production of alcohol and acids, especially ethanoic (i.e acetic) acid and large quantities of carbon dioxide.

Because of the large volume of carbon dioxide released during fermentation, fresh palm wine cannot be kept nor transported in sealed containers. Fresh palm wine is sweet, because of the high content of in fermented sugar, It is consequently low in alcoholic content and hence only very neatly intoxicating. On standing, however, fermentation proceeds rapidly, as a result of which the wine rapidly loses its’ sweet taste due to a fall in the sugar content, it also becomes more sour and more intoxicating owing to a rise in the alcoholic. Content. When fully fermented, it is very sour and strongly alcoholic. The alcohol produced here is of course mainly ethanol.

However, the strides of fermentation using the production and characterization of alcohol from fermentated palm wine are necessary to form an understanding of any fermentation process. In the beginning the only source for ethanol was from fermented starch or sugar, but later it was discovered that ethanol could be produced from the crude oil. In the 20th century the production of ethanol from fermentation nearly disappeared when the crude oil became relatively cheaper. But now it seems that this development has stopped and clock is now again moving backwards, faster and faster to the original source of ethanol which is from fermented starch or sugar. Many fermentation processes are in direct competition with strictly chemical synthesis.

Alcohol, acetones, butyl alcohol and acetic acid produced by fermentation have largely been superceded by their synthetic counterparts . Almost all major anti – biotic are obtained from fermentation process. Dextrin is another fermentation product. The micro biological production of vitamins has also becomes economically important. Thus, alcohol being the major product of fermentation has contributed a lot in technological advancement. The use of alcohol in motor vehicles is not a new technology.

When the first “otto motor” was produced, it was designed and constructed to use ethanol as fuel. In countries like Brazil, the ethanol served as fuel. In fact it has been used continuously since the twenties, though in some years in many small amount. But even in the United States of America ethanol plants were operated during the second word war to produce motor fuel and explosive for the Army. Now the crude oil prices are increasing with an unknown speed this more or less for gotten technology is awakening.

1.1 Objective of the Study

The aim of this research work is to produce ethyl alcohol of high quality from fermentation of palm wine. Both natural and industrial yeast6s will be used for the fermentation process. It is believer that a pure and high quality of ethyl alcohol will be produced having its same physical, chemical and characteristics properties. This research work will be of help in knowing the days of fermentation and quantity of ye4ast to be added using palm wine as a source of material. Unemployment can be reduced by being creative, more espe3cially in making use of this research work.

1.2 Scope of the Project

The production of ethyl alcohol involves the use of palm wine, raphia wine and oil palm. The wine to be used is palm wine. The yeast to be used is industrial saccharomyces cerevisae (baker’s yeast), which helps to facilitate fermentation process. The characteristics to be tested before and after fermentation includes, PH, specific gravity, temperature, volatility etc.

This work will not cover some areas due to material, time and financial constraints. Areas t6hat would not be covered include; blending of alcohol by the use of additive, colour ants and flavou4r; bottling of the product, labeling, corking of the product and pasteurization method etc. This research work will be restricted to the use of palm wine only, other and sources of carbohydrate such as cassava, potatoes, sugar cane could not be covered .

1.3 Significance

The significance or important of alcohol cuts acroos many sectors of our economy and it is used industries and domestically in the following ways:

Ethanol is an important solvent used to dissolve resins, varnishes , lacquer, soap, perfumes, dyes, druges and flavouring extract.

Ethyl alcohol is a raw material used in the manufacture of many important compound such as ethanol, ethyl ester, halides, ettoxy – ettane and trichoroethanol (chloral).

Ethyl alcohol is used as a fuel, either by itself mixed with petrol in racing cars and in rockets. Because of its low freeze in automobile radiators.

Finally, ethanol alcohol is present in many alcoholic beverages such as beers, wines, and spirits.

Chapter Four


The result of the research work and the analysis of the fresh palm wine and that of the fermented liquor were shown respectively in chapter three. Table V shows the characterization of the ethyl alcohol, that is % by volume of the distillate, % weight of the distillate etc

The analysis of the fresh palm wine shows that, its specific gravity is greater than that of the liquor. Paraphrasing, this indicates that the liquor contains more alcohol than the fresh palm wine.

From table II, it was observed that the temperature decreases with an increase in day of fermentation. This is because of the exothermic nature of the fermentation process, as heat is liberated to the sorrou8nding thereby lowering the temperature of the liquor.

Also during fermentation process, the result obtained showed that the PH values decreased gradually as days of fermentation increased. This is because, yeast works better at certain range of PH.

From table V, the percentage by volume of alcohol increases down the table and there is an obvious variation between the product obtained from fermented wine with yeast and that without yeast. This is due to the fact that, the addition of yeast to the samples helps to increase the rate of fermentation. But these variations are also reflected along the columns of the density, concentration and percentage by weight. These errors and variations might arise due to the fact that vapor could be lost from flash trap of distillation column and it can also arise from the when the temperature reading were taken.

Meanwhile, it was observed that at 6days fermentation with 2grammes of yeast, the %by volume of ethyl alcohol was comparative low, and that of no yeast was relatively high. The reason for this, is because, the quality of yeast added, coupled with the longer day of fermentation might have made the yeast to consume the whole sugar present in the liquor, thus making them to eat up themselves. But if this situation is allowed to continue, it will convert the wine to vinegar.

The characteristic smell of ethyl alcohol produced also varied comparatively with that of industrial ethyl alcohol. The reason for this because of source, physical and chemical properties of palm wine used. The highest ethanol obtained 27.44y. By volume which was fermented for 6days without yeast. The rate of volatility of the ethyl alcohol produce is comparatively slower than of industrial ethyl alcohol. This is due to the nature of the palm wine and the equipment used.

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