Gasoline - The Origin and Uses of Gas Today
It was actually spilled into streams or intentionally dumped on the ground and burned. The onset of the automobile of course would change that all together. Kerosene would eventually become a byproduct and gasoline the main product used to fuel these fascinating driving machines.
Oil refining methods would change as well. Initially a barrel of crude oil could produce only about 10 gallons of gas, but by the 1950's that same barrel would now produce about 17 gallons of gas. Technology has a way of evolving rapidly when there is a commercial demand for a specific product.
Gasoline is produced using various methods to convert it from petroleum. The methods are always changing and evolving, but the main production method for gas is distilling it (or converting it) from petroleum oil. Technical terms for the various processes are catalytic cracking, thermal cracking, and polymerization.
Do you remember leaded gasoline? Lead was simply an additive which helped prevent engine knocking. The process of adding lead to gasoline was eventually replaced by better, cleaner, and safer technology.
Gasoline is produced in various levels of octane. This number indicated the percentage of anti-knock additives in the gas. Some vehicles are designed to require higher octane gasoline than others.
A common misconception for many vehicle owners is the idea of putting a higher octane gas in your vehicle than that which is recommended by the manufacturer. This does not make a car or truck run better or more efficiently, nor does it produce better gas mileage.
Vehicles used in commercial applications many times are powered by diesel fuel, a variation of gasoline with a much different chemical makeup.
How long will our supply of petroleum oil last? How many more years can we continue to produce gasoline for our vehicles?
These questions are beginning to take hold on many of us today. Generations yet to come will be asking the same questions and demanding answers as we continue to increase our demand for gasoline at an alarming rate.
Many developing countries are now using gasoline at the same rate that the USA and Europe were using decades ago and the demand for gas by the western world continues to grow annually. At the same time, we continue to deplete our oil supplies and cause irreversible damage to our environment.
Many experts feel there are only a few options to ease the demand for gas. Obviously a decrease in travel by motor vehicle, including less frequency and shorter distances. Using a fuel efficient vehicle for your travel is another method. Thirdly, public transportation which can substantially save on fuel and ease traffic simultaneously.
We offer a few a few handy gasoline calculators to help you get a better idea of how much gas you use in your vehicles and how much money you spend buying gasoline.
These calculators are free and easy to use and in many cases may open your eyes to your own personal fuel consumption. Putting a dollar amount on your fuel usage may have more impact on your driving habits than the threat of possible future energy shortages.
Do you find gasoline interesting? Oddly enough, many people do. Read some of the frequently asked questions about gasoline.