FORMULATION AND PRODUCTION OF ALCOHOL FROM PALM WINE. A RESEARCH PROJECT TOPIC ON CHEMICAL ENGINEERING
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).
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.