Topic 4 - Crude Oil and Alternative fuels

AQA revison notes on Crude oil/hydrocarbons, it's uses, alkanes, alkenes, and alternative fuels.

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  • Created on: 11-06-12 19:22
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These are revision notes on AQA Chemestry1, topic 4 Crude oil and
alternative fuels.
Crude Oil
Crude Oil is a mixture of different length hydrocarbons. These
different lengths are called fractions. We use hydrocarbons
as fuels and for making polymers (plastic).
Because Crude Oil is a MIXTURE the different length
hydrocarbons are not chemically bonded just physically mixed
together. This means we can separate them by physical means
in a fractionating column.
In a fractionating column the smallest molecules rise up as
gasses and are tapped off at the very top. The other length
molecules are too large to float off as a gas so they condense
and are tapped off at each level they condense at. The longest
heaviest molecules stay at the bottom and the smaller molecules
condense higher up.

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Properties of different length molecules
Fraction Shorter to longer
Boiling point Increase in temperature
Colour Gets darker
Viscosity Becomes more viscous (sticky)
Volatile Becomes less volatile (sticky)
How easy to burn? less easy to burn
Alkanes
Alkanes are saturated, have only single bonds and are unreactive.…read more

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H
2) Ethane C2H6 H H
H C C H
H H
3) Propane C3H8 H H H
H C C C H
H H H
4) Butane (pronounced Buetane)
H H H H
H C C C C H
H H H H
The Chemical formula for Alkanes is C2H2n+2
This way we can work out the chemical formula for ANY alkane.…read more

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H H
There is no such thing as Methene because you need at least
TWO carbons to have a double bond and `Meth' means one.…read more

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However, using crude oil provides us with problems:
CO2 (carbon dioxide) and SO2 (sulphur dioxide) is created
when they are burnt the CO2 contributes to climate
change and the SO2 causes acid rain which can damage
plants, animals, trees and buildings.
The buildup of soot in the atmosphere from burning fossil
fuels causes global dimming where less sunlight reaches
the surface of the earth.…read more

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Cons: Engines need to be converted to work with ethanol fuel.
Also ethanol fuel is not widely available and there are worries
that if the demand for it increases farmers will grow fuel crops
rather than food crops leading to increase in food prices.
Biodiesel ­ Produced from vegetable oils such as rapeseed oil
and soybean oil. It can be mixed with ordinary diesel to produce
a more environmentally friendly fuel.…read more

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