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Fractional Distillation

The various components of crude oil have different sizes, weights and boiling
temperatures; so, the first step is to separate these components. Because they have different
boiling temperatures, they can be separated easily by a process called fractional distillation.
The steps of fractional distillation are as follows:
1. You heat the mixture of two or more substances (liquids) with different boiling points
to a high temperature. Heating is usually done with high pressure steam to
temperatures of about 1112 degrees Fahrenheit / 600 degrees Celsius.
2. The mixture boils, forming vapor (gases); most substances go into the vapor phase.
3. The vapor enters the bottom of a long column (fractional distillation column) that is
filled with trays or plates. The trays have many holes or bubble caps (like a loosened
cap on a soda bottle) in them to allow the vapor to pass through. They increase the
contact time between the vapor and the liquids in the column and help to collect
liquids that form at various heights in the column. There is a temperature difference
across the column (hot at the bottom, cool at the top).
4. The vapor rises in the column.
5. As the vapor rises through the trays in the column, it cools.
6. When a substance in the vapor reaches a height where the temperature of the column
is equal to that substance's boiling point, it will condense to form a liquid. (The
substance with the lowest boiling point will condense at the highest point in the
column; substances with higher boiling points will condense lower in the column.).
7. The trays collect the various liquid fractions.
8. The collected liquid fractions may pass to condensers, which cool them further, and
then go to storage tanks, or they may go to other areas for further chemical processing
The Product
1. Liquefied natural gas (LNG)
is natural gas (predominantly methane, CH4) that has been converted to liquid form
for ease of storage or transport. It takes up about 1/600th the volume of natural gas in
the gaseous state. It is odorless, colorless, non-toxic and non-corrosive. Hazards
include flammability after vaporization into a gaseous state, freezing andasphyxia.
The liquefaction process involves removal of certain components, such as dust, acid
gases, helium, water, and heavy hydrocarbons, which could cause difficulty
downstream. The natural gas is then condensed into a liquid at close to atmospheric
pressure by cooling it to approximately 162 C (260 F); maximum transport
pressure is set at around 25 kPa (4 psi).

2. Liquified petroleum gas or liquid petroleum gas (LPG or LP gas)

Also referred to as simply propane or butane, are flammable mixtures of
hydrocarbon gases used as fuel in heating appliances, cooking equipment, and
vehicles. It is increasingly used as an aerosol propellant and a refrigerant,
replacing chlorofluorocarbons in an effort to reduce damage to the ozone layer. When
specifically used as a vehicle fuel it is often referred to autogas. Varieties of LPG

bought and sold include mixes that are primarily propane (C3H8),
primarily butane (C4H10) and, most commonly, mixes including both propane
and butane. In the northern hemisphere winter, the mixes contain more propane, while
in summer, they contain more butane. In the United States, primarily two grades of
LPG are sold: commercial propane and HD-5. These specifications are published by
the Gas Processors Association (GPA) and the American Society of Testing and
Materials (ASTM). Propane/butane blends are also listed in these specifications.

3. Gasoline
Also known as petrol (C9H20) outside of North America, is a transparent, petroleumderived liquid that is used primarily as a fuel in internal combustion engines. It
consists mostly of organic compounds obtained by the fractional distillation of
petroleum, enhanced with a variety of additives.
The characteristic of a particular gasoline blend to resist igniting too early (which
causes knocking and reduces efficiency in reciprocating engines) is measured by
its octane rating. Gasoline is produced in several grades of octane
rating.Tetraethyllead and other lead compounds are no longer used in most areas to
regulate and increase octane-rating, but many other additives are put into gasoline to
improve its chemical stability, control corrosiveness and provide fuel system
'cleaning,' and determine performance characteristics under intended use. Sometimes,
gasoline also contains ethanol as an alternative fuel, for economic or environmental
Gasoline, as used worldwide in the vast number of internal combustion engines used
in transport and industry, has a significant impact on the environment, both in local
effects (e.g., smog) and in global effects (e.g., effect on the climate). Gasoline may
also enter the environment uncombusted, as liquid and as vapors, from leakage and
handling during production, transport and delivery, from storage tanks, from spills,
etc. As an example of efforts to control such leakage, many (underground) storage
tanks are required to have extensive measures in place to detect and prevent such
leaks. Gasoline contains benzene and other known carcinogens

4. Kerosene
Also known as lamp oil, is a combustible hydrocarbon liquid (C12H26-C15H32)
widely used as a fuel in industry and households. Its name derives
fromGreek: (keros) meaning wax, and was registered as a trademark
by Abraham Gesner in 1854 before evolving into a genericized trademark. It is
sometimes spelled kerosine in scientific and industrial usage.

Kerosene is usually called paraffin in the UK, Southeast Asia, East Africa and South
Africa. A more viscous paraffin oil is used as a laxative. A waxy solid extracted from
petroleum is called paraffin wax.
Kerosene is widely used to power jet engines of aircraft (jet fuel) and some rocket
engines, and is also commonly used as a cooking and lighting fuel and for fire toys
such as poi. In parts of Asia, where the price of kerosene is subsidized, it fuels
outboard motors on small fishing boats.Kerosene lamps are widely used for lighting
in rural areas of Asia and Africa where electrical distribution is not available or too
costly for widespread use. World total kerosene consumption for all purposes is
equivalent to about 1.2 million barrels per day.
To prevent confusion between kerosene and the much more flammable gasoline, some
jurisdictions regulate markings or colorings for containers used to store or dispense
kerosene. For example, in the United States, the Commonwealth of
Pennsylvania requires that portable containers used at retail service stations be
colored blue, as opposed to red (for gasoline) or yellow (for diesel fuel).
Kerosene is a thin, clear liquid formed from hydrocarbons obtained from
the fractional distillation of petroleum between 150 C and 275 C, resulting in a
mixture with a density of 0.780.81 g/cm3 composed of carbon chains that typically
contain between 6 and 16 carbon atoms per molecule.

5. Petroleum diesel
C15H32 C16H34, also called petrodiesel or fossil diesel is the most common type
of diesel fuel. It is produced from the fractional distillation of crude oil between
200 C (392 F) and 350 C (662 F) at atmospheric pressure, resulting in a mixture
of carbon chains that typically contain between 8 and 21 carbon atoms per molecule.
Diesel fuel in general is any liquid fuel used in diesel engines, whose fuel ignition
takes place, without spark, as a result of compression of the inlet air mixture and then
injection of fuel. (Glow plugs, grid heaters and heater blocks help achieve high
temperatures for combustion during engine startup in cold weather.) Diesel engines
have found broad use as a result of higher thermodynamic and thus fuel efficiencies.
This is particularly noted where diesel engines are run at part-load; as their air supply
is not throttled as in a petrol engine, their efficiency still remains high.
The most common type of diesel fuel is a specific fractional distillate of
petroleum fuel oil, but alternatives that are not derived from petroleum, such
as biodiesel, biomass to liquid(BTL) or gas to liquid (GTL) diesel, are increasingly
being developed and adopted. To distinguish these types, petroleum-derived diesel is
increasingly called petrodiesel.