Free Fatty Acid (FFA) Detection Based On Optical Technique Utilizing Base Catalyst Esterification of Crude Palm Oil (CPO)

Free fatty acid (FFA) content is a main factor in determined a high quality of palm oil which is as a lower content of FFA give a better quality of palm oil. After years, detection of free fatty acid (FFA) in palm oil was done using conventional method which used a large amount of organic solvent and involves manual operation. A new novel method was approach by undergo esterification. This study was involve a direct conversion of triacylglycerols in oil to form fatty hydroxamic acid (FHA) with excess hydroxalamine hydrochloric in the presence of a base catalyst (NaOH and NBS) without isolating FFA first. Base catalysts are used due to their high activity and give a rapid reaction, thus make them economically superior over acids and immobilized lipases catalyst. Qualititative analysis of FHA is carried out by observing the colour of FHA-metal complexes formation which the colour appearance of FHA-metal complex indicates the FFA content in palm oil. UV-Visible spectrophotometer is used to determine the colour absorption of FHA-metal complex and then UV-Vis data is correlated with standard titration method in determination of amount of FFA in palm oil. Several parameter had been studied which include study on effect of reaction time, effect of reaction temperature, effect of different base catalyst and effect of different metal ion in order to get an optimum condition.

Prepared by: Norsyamimi Che Sulaman (GS40208)