Numerous industries make use of chemical compounds in order to manufacture products, and petrochemicals are commonly included in these ingredient lists. If you’ve never heard of petrochemicals, or you’d like to learn more about the product that’s used at your organization, read on.
Here, we will cover what petrochemicals are, the array of functions they serve, and information about the different classes of petrochemicals.
Petrochemicals refer to chemical compounds that are manufactured from crude oil or natural gas. These chemicals have a wide range of applications in commercial settings, and the umbrella term “petrochemicals” includes an array of organic chemical mixtures.
Petrochemicals take the form of fewer than fifteen basic compounds, but they can be modified in order to manufacture thousands of unique products.
Common petrochemicals include:
The next section of this article will cover various petrochemical applications and list some of the products that petrochemicals are used to create.
Depending on the precise type used, Petrochemicals can be a crucial ingredient in manufacturing various products across numerous industries, from construction to medicine, electronics, machinery, clothing, furniture, or even office equipment.
Petrochemicals are found in many products you’ve likely encountered previously. For instance, the following widespread items frequently contain petrochemicals:
The processes of storing and transporting these materials may vary somewhat, depending on the specific elements involved. However, storage of crude material usually requires either underground or above-ground tanks to ensure safety. Each chemical product comes with data safety sheets that provide detailed, specific information for handlers to follow.
There are two main classes of petrochemicals, which are olefins and aromatics. However, a third, less common class exists that includes inorganics and synthesis gas.
Olefins, which are also sometimes referred to as alkenes, are chemical compounds made from carbon and hydrogen. These products contain at least one pair of carbon atoms that are linked through a double bond.
Included in the olefin class are chemicals like propylene, ethylene, and butylene.
Aromatics, on the other hand, are chemical compounds that contain at least one planar ring of atoms that are linked by covalent bonds. Benzene, for example, is an aromatic compound that has six carbon atoms in a planar ring.
Other examples of aromatic compounds include toluene, xylene, and naphthalene.
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