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Crude Oil for AQA GCSE Chemistry

Crude Oil

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.

What is crude oil

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.

Fractional distillation

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.

Physical properties of fractions

Crude oil has a variety of applications in industry and everyday life.

Uses of crude oil

1

What is the name given to the fraction that doesn't move up in the chamber at all and is still liquid at 350 ยบC?

bitumen

What is the name given to the fraction that doesn't move up in the chamber at all and is still liquid at 350 ยบC?

2

What name is given to the fraction that doesn't condense in fractional distillation?

petroleum gases

What name is given to the fraction that doesn't condense in fractional distillation?

3

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.

What is chemical feedstock?

4

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.

Why are smaller fractions usually more useful than longer chain fractions?

5

What state are most fractions extracted in?

liquid

What state are most fractions extracted in?

End of page

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