Organic carbonate production utilizing crude glycerol derived as by-product of biodiesel production: A review

Saifuddin Nomanbhay, Mei Yin Ong, Kit Wayne Chew, Pau Loke Show, Man Kee Lam, Wei Hsin Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


As a promising alternative renewable liquid fuel, biodiesel production has increased and eventually led to an increase in the production of its by-product, crude glycerol. The vast generation of glycerol has surpassed the market demand. Hence, the crude glycerol produced should be utilized effectively to increase the viability of biodiesel production. One of them is through crude glycerol upgrading, which is not economical. A good deal of attention has been dedicated to research for alternative material and chemicals derived from sustainable biomass resources. It will be more valuable if the crude glycerol is converted into glycerol derivatives, and so, increase the economic possibility of the biodiesel production. Studies showed that glycerol carbonate plays an important role, as a building block, in synthesizing the glycerol oligomers at milder conditions under microwave irradiation. This review presents a brief outline of the physio-chemical, thermodynamic, toxicological, production methods, reactivity, and application of organic carbonates derived from glycerol with a major focus on glycerol carbonate and dimethyl carbonate (DMC), as a green chemical, for application in the chemical and biotechnical field. Research gaps and further improvements have also been discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1483
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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