Analía Bellizzi – Chemistry Classes

Ronald Reagan Senior High School


Fuels are substances that can be burned.

Depending on how they formed, we can find

COAL, which formed  from ancient plants or OIL AND NATURAL GAS which formed from microorganisms in ancient oceans. 

The main constituent of natural gas is methane= CH4

Describe petroleum as…

  • A mixture of hydrocarbons … and its separation into useful fractions by fractional distillation
  • different hydrocarbons have different carbon chain lengths, with longer chain carbon chains having higher boiling points
  • their different boiling points means petroleum can be separated by fractional distillation:

○ a large fraction column with petroleum is heated

○ different hydrocarbons boil and rise up as gases, which can then be collected separately

Describe the properties of molecules within a fraction

  • ● Some properties of hydrocarbons depend on the size of their molecules. These properties influence their use as fuels.
  • ● The shorter the molecules, the lower the temperature at which that fraction evaporates or condenses – and the lower its boiling point.
  • ● Shorter the molecules, the less viscous it is. (more runny)

Name the uses of the fractions as:

  • ● Refinery gas for bottled gas for heating and cooking
  • ● Gasoline fraction for fuel (petrol) in cars
  • ● Naphtha fraction for making chemicals
  • ● Kerosene/paraffin fraction for jet fuel
  • ● Diesel oil/gas oil for fuel in diesel engines
  • ● Fuel oil fraction for fuel for ships and home heating systems
  • ● Lubricating fraction for lubricants, waxes and polishes
  • ● Bitumen for making roads