Monday, March 31, 2008

Earth Day

Earth Day is coming up on April 22nd.

What are you doing for Earth Day?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Where should we display our car?

We are planning to display our veggie oil vehicle at the following places. Please comment on them and give us some ideas of other places we should bring our car to teach people about the benefits of Waste Veggie Oil vehicles.

• Downtown
• Other High Schools, elementary schools, junior high
• Museums
• Zoo
• Six Flags
• The Beach
• Navy Pier
• Millenium Park
• Garfield Park
• Humboldt Park
• Kelvin Park
• Palmer square festival
• Chinatown
• Taste of Chicago
• Kiddie Land (Melrose Park)
• Pilsen, 26th street
• Buffets
• Forest Preserve
• Rock and Roll McDonalds
• Church Block party Gap Center
• Cinco de Mayo parade
• Puerto Rican Parade (June 11?)
• Logan Square Farmers Market
• Malls
• North Grand Carnival (Last day of School)
• Fullerton Beach

Thanks from the students of the ASM Biodiesel program

Friday, March 14, 2008

The Skinny on our Neighborhood Restaurants' Fat

We were originally planning to use the waste vegetable oil from our school cafeteria's deep fryers. In a move to improve the nutritional value of our school lunches, though, CPS stopped using deep fryers and started using baked fries. Fortunately for our project, there is no shortage of used veggie oil in our neighborhood. We have begun collecting oil from our school culinary arts department (Thanks Mr. Chatman) as well as some local restaurants. You can view a Google Map of our neighborhood restaurant partners. We are especially grateful to El Taconazo, Lees Garden and Carnicerias Jimenez for their help and support.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

today - By Jr. Santa

today we went to pick up some waste veggie oil so we can filter it and put it into a car

Sunday, March 9, 2008

The car we will be converting

This is the 1980 Mercedes Benz 300TD Wagon we have purchased and will be converting to run on waste vegetable oil (WVO).

It runs well, but needs a little work on the suspension and has a bit of rust on the underside.

What? Energy in a peanut?

By burning a peanut we release its chemical energy. We can measure this by noting how much the burning peanut can increase the temperature of 50ml of water. The photo above shows shows the calorimetry set-up we used to measure the energy in a peanut.

The experiment wasn't perfect though, because we didn't have a way to measure the mass of the smoke released and we lost some heat to the air and the calorimeter itself.

In order to figure out how much energy there is per mass we used electronic balances to get the mass of the peanuts before and after burning.

Thursday, March 6, 2008


How can we run a car on vegetable oil? Since the hydrocarbon chains for diesel fuel and for vegetable oil are simmilar a diesel engine should run on clean veggie oil.

We drew 2-d models of molecules and built 3-d models of hydrocarbons and compared them. Once we built the models and drew the diagrams it was easy to see how veggie oil could run a diesel car.