Glycerine is obtained from the biodiesel manufacturing process. In addition, it can be produced via hydrolysis of fats and as one of the glucose fermentation products. Glycerine can also be derived synthetically from propylene.
At ORLEN Południe, glycerine is obtained from natural plant materials. It is a major by-product of the biodiesel manufacturing process.
Two purity grades are obtained from an advanced purification plant: technical grade glycerine and distilled glycerine.
Crude alkaline glycerine from the production of biodiesel (fatty acid methyl esters) is neutralised by means of sulphuric acid, and then free fatty acids, potassium sulphate, unreacted methanol and water are removed. The resultant technical grade glycerine is rectified (at reduced pressure) and undergoes adsorption on activated carbon to purify it into distilled glycerine. The high quality rectification unit yields a glycerine output with a purity of more than 99.5%.