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FIg 1 Frac Dist

Crude Oil Fractional Distillation

"The most common form of separation technology in petroleum refineries


Fractional distillation is the process by which oil refineries separate petroleum (crude oil) into different, more useful hydrocarbon products based on their relative molecular weights.


Figure 1 shows the fractional distillation of crude oil.  In this process, heated crude oil enters a tall fractional column, which is hot at the bottom and gets cooler towards the top, and the oil vapours rise through the column and condense when they become cool enough: liquids are led out of the column at different heights.


Table 1 shows the boiling point & carbon chain length for each fractional distillation product.

Figure 1: Crude oil fractional distillation process

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Table 1: Fractional distillation results

Tab 1 Carbons numb
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