Crude Oil for AQA GCSE Chemistry
This page covers the following topics:
1. What is crude oil
2. Fractional distillation
3. Physical properties of fractions
4. Uses of crude oil
Crude oil is made up of decayed organisms (mostly plankton) that died millions of years ago and became buried within the Earth's crust. It is a hydrocarbon mixture used as a source for fuels and plastics.
Fractional distillation is a method to separate crude oil into 'fractions' depending on the length of the hydrocarbon chains. It is very hot at the bottom and becomes cooler to the top to condense fractions at different points.
Going up the fractional distillation column the temperature decreases so fractions have lower condensation points. Using this information you can infer the other properties of the fractions.
Crude oil has a variety of applications in industry and everyday life.
What is the name given to the fraction that doesn't move up in the chamber at all and is still liquid at 350 ºC?
What name is given to the fraction that doesn't condense in fractional distillation?
What is chemical feedstock?
Chemical feedstock is the chemicals that feed into an industrial reaction, for example the monomers (e.g. ethene) derived from crude oil feed into polymer manufacture.
Why are smaller fractions usually more useful than longer chain fractions?
They are more flammable, thus they make better fuels, they have small molecules, thus they can join together to form polymers.
What state are most fractions extracted in?
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