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Ethylene What is ethylene? What is cracking? Why do we do it?

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Presentation on theme: "Ethylene What is ethylene? What is cracking? Why do we do it?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Ethylene What is ethylene? What is cracking? Why do we do it?

2 Ethylene Ethylene is an unsaturated hydrocarbon. Structure:? Formula:? Shape:? It is obtained from petroleum. (crude oil)

3 Fractional Distillation

4 Products of fractional distillation Crude oil contains mostly large molecules. Q – Why is this a problem? Big molecules Small molecules Medium molecules

5 P The large proportion of long chains is a problem because there is little demand for the long chain fractions (eg:____ ) but a HUGE demand short chains (eg:_____ ) Big molecules Small molecules Medium molecules Products of fractional distillation

6 Cracking One solution to this is to “crack” the long chain molecules into short chains. Two options are available: 1) Thermal cracking (using very high temperatures to break the bonds) 2) Catalytic cracking (using a catalyst to break the bonds at lower temperature)

7 Cracking Imagine you own a cracking plant. Thinking about time, safety, energy and cost, justify the preferred use of catalytic cracking over thermal cracking. 5 mins

8 Catalytic Cracking Large hydrocarbons are broken into smaller molecules using heat and a catalyst. The small molecules produced are then separated by distillation. Catalytic cracker Heat to vaporise Distillation tower pressure Big Molecules Smaller molecules Molecules break up

9 Catalytic Cracking Using molymod kits, perform the cracking of decane to make ethylene. Complete the missing gaps in the following slide. You should add a balanced symbol equation.

10 Catalytic Cracking In the catalytic cracker long chain molecules are split apart or ‘cracked’. An example of such a reaction is: + ethylene Used to make 1)_________ 2)__________ Heat pressure catalyst Used as a ______ decane ______

11 Reasons for catalytic cracking Q) Evaluate the importance of catalytic cracking on the petroleum and polymer industries. (5 Minutes)

12 Reasons for catalytic cracking A)You should have mentioned: 1) production of short chain alkanes (useful) 2) reduction of surplus long chain fractions. 3) production of useful alkenes, used to make polymers.

13 What catalyst is used? Imagine you work for a chemical company. In groups your task is to design a catalyst to crack some alkanes. 1.Chemically, how should it behave? 2.What physical properties must it have? 3.Thinking microscopically, what kind of shape would be the most effective (think surface area) ?

14 What catalyst is used? The catalyst should: be inert (unreactive) yet form partial bonds with alkanes. have a high melting point. have a large surface area.

15 Electron microscope “pictures” of the catalyst used


17 Zeolites Aluminosilicate compounds (Al, Si and O.) Honeycomb structure (huge surface area) for alkanes to be adsorbed on to. Circulated as powders in the cracker.

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