The Waste Vegetable Oil Fuel Project
at the Ecovillage Training Center
January 12, 2007 Program
by Bob Augustin Jr.
Jason Deptula with the Ecovillage Training Center at the Farm in Summertown presented the program to the Lawrenceburg Rotary Club at their January 12, 2007 meeting. The topic of the program was the use of waste vegetable oil as an alternative fuel.
Mr. Deptula explained that most waste vegetable oil as fuel processes emphasize adding chemicals to soybean oil to convert it into Biodiesel fuel, which has a greater viscosity than soybean oil. At the Ecovillage, he has taken a different approach and, instead of chemically modifying waste vegetable oil, he modified his Volkswagen Jetta to run on ordinary waste vegetable oil. Vegetable oil is too thick at normal temperatures to remain fluid. Consequently, Mr. Deptula starts his vehicle with Biodiesel and uses the heat from the engine to heat the vegetable oil to keep it fluid. Then he switches over to the tank with vegetable oil to power his vehicle.
To make the fuel, he collects waste vegetable oil from local restaurants and filters it to remove food debris and water. He said he gets approximately 45 miles to the gallon in his VW Jetta. After answering the many questions from the audience, Mr. Deptula gave a demonstration of his vehicle in the parking lot.
Photo caption: Jason Deptula and his VW Jetta fueled by waste vegetable oil.