Skip to comments.Crude oil distillation and the definition of refinery capacity
Posted on 07/06/2012 5:47:06 AM PDT by thackney
A crude oil refinery is a group of industrial facilities that turns crude oil and other inputs into finished petroleum products. A refinery's capacity refers to the maximum amount of crude oil designed to flow into the distillation unit of a refinery, also known as the crude unit.
The diagram above presents a stylized version of the distillation process. Crude oil is made up of a mixture of hydrocarbons, and the distillation process aims to separate this crude oil into broad categories of its component hydrocarbons, or "fractions." Crude oil is first heated and then put into a distillation column, also known as a still, where different products boil off and are recovered at different temperatures.
Lighter products, such as butane and other liquid petroleum gases (LPG), gasoline blending components, and naphtha, are recovered at the lowest temperatures. Mid-range products include jet fuel, kerosene, and distillates (such as home heating oil and diesel fuel). The heaviest products such as residual fuel oil are recovered at temperatures sometimes over 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit.
The simplest refineries stop at this point. Although not shown in the simplified diagram above, most refineries in the United States reprocess the heavier fractions into lighter products to maximize the output of the most desirable products using more sophisticated refining equipment such as catalytic crackers, reformers, and cokers.
U. S. Operable Crude Oil Distillation Capacity
US Refinery Yield
related to your previous question concerning gasoline from diesel:
As described here, during the early stage of refining, the distillation process separates out the hydrocarbon molecules for different feedstocks.
Further processing is done from here, but what is used in gasoline is not contained in diesel or heating fuel.
I was just wondering about this the other day.
More specifically, how do they remove the sulfur for ultra-low sulfur diesel. Diesel used to be cheaper than gasoline, but now is more expensive.
Thanks for posting, great info.
Gasoline also has low sulfur requirements.
There is siginficant competition in the different processes used to remove the sulfur.
God Bless and Protect Freepers !!!
Leaded gas required an additional process and product as opposed to unleaded, yet, leaded gas was cheaper.
I eventually thought the reason was to clean out all the leaded gas as quickly as possible so the tanks would be re-filled with unleaded ...
and as Kurt Vonnegut Jr. so aptly put it;
and so it goes.
I’m pretty sure that lead was an additive and that unleaded gasoline has to use different, more expensive additives as a substitute for the lead. That explains why leaded gasoline was cheaper at the time.
Going to unleaded gasoline required the addition of more complex additives to replace the properties in the lead. Lead was used to prevent excessive engine wear. The additives used to replace lead are more expensive.
also tetraethyl lead was an anti-knock additive
so to maintain the same octane in an unleaded took additional additives
It was not a significant issue until manufactures started producing higher compression engines that made the condition more prevalent.
Right after I bought my first diesel pickup, Chevy 2500 Duramax.
You can thank the EPA for that rise in price.
Even so, you will still save money in the long run - - if you’re not one of those people that trades-in every few years.
Y'sure know how to screw up a guys memory.
Growing up in the East Texas Oil Patch, remembering how easy it was to get “drip or casenhead” gas which knocked like heck, and was definately not good for your engine, but couldn’t beat the price (when gas stations were selling Regular for 25cents). Basically was natural gasoline or unlead. Was great in Coleman lanterns and stoves.
Thanks for the Tech lesson today!
Your memory is correct. They stopped adding lead and the price went up.
It just wasn't discussed much that the lead was replaced with something else more expensive.