Chemical Engineering Find Cheap Fuel Saver with Citronella Oil

The high demand for fossil fuel has made the world petroleum reserves run out. On the other hand, there are essential oils that are the product of Indonesia’s natural wealth.

One of them is citronella oil, which is predicted to have characteristics close to the characteristics of fuel oil.

Combining these two facts, three students of the Faculty of Engineering Universitas Brawijaya (FTUB) researched the effectiveness of adding citronella essential oil as a bio-additive for fuel oil.

Rohmah Milenia, on the behalf of her team, explained that citronella oil has the potential to be an additive for oil fuel, especially RON 90 (Pertalite) and RON 88 (Premium).

“This citronella oil can be used as a supplier of oxygen (oxygenate) for pertalite and premium,” Rohmah explained.

Furthermore, oxygen can maximize the combustion process in the engine. If the combustion process occurs optimally and efficiently, fuel consumption will decrease.

In her research, it turns out that the effect of citronella oil also increases the octane number by 9% and also the calorific value of the fuel. This means that the amount of energy produced will be greater so that fuel consumption will, of course, decrease.

The method used is also relatively easy and inexpensive. The team only needed to mix (blending method) 0.1% to 1.5% citronella oil for a fuel volume of 500 ml to 1000 ml.

“Hopefully this research can reduce fuel consumption in Indonesia, apart from that it can open up insights into Indonesia’s natural wealth, which has a very manageable potential,” hoped Rohma on behalf of the team.

This research was conducted by Rohma and his two colleagues, Livya Safira Islam, and Muhammad Ihsa. Under the guidance of Aji Hendra Sarosa ST., MT., the team will compete for the XXXIII National Student Scientific Week (PIMNAS) in November 2020. (mic)