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Gasoline—a petroleum product
it is a fuel made from crude oil and other petroleum liquids.
it is mainly used as an engine fuel in vehicles.
Petroleum refineries and blending facilities produce motor for sale at retail fueling stations.
Most of the that petroleum refineries produce is actually unfinished .
(or blendstocks). blendstocks require blending with other liquids to make finished motor .
which meets the basic requirements for fuel that is suitable for use in spark ignition engines.
U.S. petroleum refineries produce some finished motor .
However, most finished motor sold in the United States is actually produced at blending terminals.
where gasoline blendstocks
finished , and fuel ethanol are blended to produce finished motor in different grades and formulations for consumer use.
Some companies also have detergents and other additives blended into before delivery to retail outlets.
Blending terminals are more numerous and widely dispersed than petroleum refineries.
and they have equipment for filling tanker trucks that transport finished motor to retail outlets.
Most of the finished motor now sold in the United States contains about 10% fuel ethanol by volume.
Ethanol is added to mainly to meet the requirements of the Renewable Fuel Standard.
which is intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the amount of oil that the United States imports from other countries.
Gasoline varies by grade
Three main grades of are sold at retail refueling stations:
Some companies have different names for these grades of , such as unleaded, super, or super premium.
but they all indicate the octane rating, which reflects the antiknock properties of .
Higher octane ratings result in higher prices.
Before 1996, lead was added to as a lubricant to reduce wear on engine valves.
Leaded was completely phased out of the U.S. fuel system by 1996. Manufacturers recommend the grade of for use in each model of a vehicle.
Gasoline also varies by formulation
In addition to the different grades of motor , the formulation of may differ depending on the location .
where it is sold or the season of the year.
Federal and state air pollution control programs that aim to reduce carbon monoxide, smog, and air toxins require oxygenated, reformulated, and low-volatility .
Some areas of the country are required to use specially formulated to reduce certain emissions.
and the formulation may change during winter .
and summer months. These area-specific requirements mean that is not a homogenous product nationwide.
it is produced for sale in one area of the United States might not be authorized for sale in another area.
Gasoline also known as petrol is an energy-dense secondary fuel that can be thought of as an energy currency.
It is used to power many heat engines, most importantly it acts as a fuel for a large proportion of cars.
is made when crude oil is broken into various petroleum products through a process of fractional distillation.
The finished product is then distributed to gas stations through pipelines.
is essential to running most internal combustion engine cars.
Because of this, is one of the most widely used petroleum products. makes up about half of all the petroleum products used.
In contrast, diesel made up ~20% and kerosene (or jet fuel) .
~8%. The price of varies drastically all over the globe and this impacts the cost of running a vehicle.
Additionally, the global economy has become increasingly more intertwined with oil production and prices thus impacting the consumer basket.
The exact chemical composition of varies depending on its grade or octane rating, but generally speaking it is a mixture of combustible hydrocarbons.
This octane rating describes the quality of the fuel, and the value is based on the ratios of two compounds in the .
– specifically iso-octane, a compound with the same chemical formula as octane but with a slightly different structure and properties, and normal heptane.[
5] The higher the amount of octane in the fuel, the larger the octane number and the higher the quality fuel.
This higher quality of the fuel ensures that the ignition of the fuel happens on time as a result of a spark from the spark plug and not early as a result of compression from the piston.
More recently, is being mixed with a biofuel known as ethanol.
In Canada, 87-Octane is allowed to consist of up to 10% ethanol, as this is the highest percentage of ethanol that a regular car engine can still function on.
Additionally, the specific composition of results in a high energy density.
This high energy density is what makes gasoline such a valuable fuel.
as a relatively small volume of fuel can provide a large amount of useful energy.
The combustion of gasoline is a significant source of human-made carbon dioxide (CO2). As is the case with the combustion of any fossil fuel.
the formation of this carbon dioxide contributes negatively to the Earth‘s climate and promotes global warming and climate change.
The total amount of carbon dioxide that is emitted when gasoline is burned depends on the mass of the fuel used.
Thus a car that uses less gasoline will release fewer emissions into the environment.
This makes it essential to design cars as fuel efficient as possible to reduce costs and limit emissions.
Increasing the fuel efficiency (mpg of a vehicle) both saves money and reduces emissions. As an example.
over a 10 year period, driving a car with 30 MPG instead of a car with 24 MPG saves more than $4,000 in fuel costs.
assuming the cost of fuel is static at $1.20 per liter.
It also emits over 8,000 kg less of CO2.
For more on CO2 emissions from the combustion of hydrocarbon fuels.