3 Petroleum: From the ground to your gas tank What comes out of the ground is not immediately usefulIt has to be treated, or refined, to produce useful fuelsFirst step is fractional distillationThis process separates the various petroleum based products.
4 Fractional Distillation The petroleum is heated to about 400 C which vaporizes it.The vapors are sent into a tower called a fractionating column. As they rise and cool different fuel products condense at different heights.
5 Further treatmentsWhat comes out of the distillation process is not quite ready for use yet. It still needs to be modified.For example: Gasoline needs octane added and tar needs heavy molecules removed from it.
6 Treatment processesThermal cracking: The product is exposed to high temperatures and pressures which break heavy molecules into lighter ones.Catalytic conversion: petroleum vapor is passed over a alumina-silicate mixture or clay which creates a chemical reaction and adds octane to the gasPolymerization: light hydrocarbon molecules are joined and they produce heavier molecules. Natural gas is made into high octane fuels this way.
7 Alkane HydrocarbonsYou have heard these names before: methane, ethane, propane, butane, pentane, hexne, heptane, octane.Methane and ethane are the main components of natural gasPropane and butane can be liquefied at fairly low pressures, and are well known as liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)Pentane, nexane, heptane and octane are volatile liquids. They are used as fuels in internal combustion engines, as they vaporize easily on entry into the combustion chamber without forming droplets, which would impair the uniformity of the combustion.MethaneCarbon atom is black, H atomis whiteEthane
9 Natural gasUsed since the 6th century BCE in China and Japan. They used bamboo pipes to carry it to lights.For the most part, it was considered an annoying by product of petroleum exploration and was often burned off of oil wells.1821 Fredonia, New York. A pipe provided NG to 30 burnersDevelopment was slow due to the lack of pipeline infrastructureDuring and after WWII, its use became more widespread because it was inexpensive and pipelines were laid across the country.
10 UsesPower plants: gas turbines have a higher efficiency in converting the fuel to power than steam turbines (we will talk about these turbines later) . Plants are cheaper to build and more environmentally friendly.Transportation: Use is growing, but limited by range (need to store the fuel in the vehicle under high pressure and there is not a widespread distribution system).
11 Not the solution! Will not solve our energy problems Most comes from domestic production, as shipping is difficult.US has consumed 85% of its available natural gas and at the current rate of consumption, we have enough for about 30 years.Methane from coal beds can be used to produce natural gas, which will increase supply somewhat.
13 Coal typesPeat: Youngest form of coal, lowest grade, low quality fuel and organic material for gardenersLignite: 150 million yrs old, 50% carbon contentBituminous: 300 million years old, 50-80% carbonAnthracite: 500 million years old, 95% carbon, hardest and cleanest burning coal.