The fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) production from Chlorella vulgaris has been studied by sequential investigation such as microalgae culturing, lipid extraction, and lipid conversion to FAME. The C. vulgaris could grow well in the BG-11 medium and had a doubling time 3.7 days for its growth using inocula 16% (v/v). The optimum of dry cell biomass as 11.6 g/L was obtained after the microalgae culture harvested for 6 days. Lipid extraction from the biomass was carried out in various solvents and ultrasonication power, resulted lipid as 31% (w/w) when extracted with a mixed solvent of n-hexane-ethanol in ratio 1:1 and ultrasonication treatment at power 25 kHz/270W for 30 min. The lipid then converted to FAME through transesterification reaction with methanol using H2SO4 catalyst at 45°C for 2 h, and resulted FAME with area 32.26% in GC-MS analysis. The area was corresponded to FAME output as 13.68% (w/w). Fatty acid profiles of FAME obtained from GC-MS analysis showed the major peaks of fatty acids found in Chlorella vulgaris were palmitic acid (C16:0), stearic acid (C18:0) and margaric acid (C17:0), and nonadecanoic acid (C19:0). Optimization of the transesterification reaction will be developed in future to improve the FAME product.
- Chlorella vulgaris