Applications of oil other than energy
For several people, the major use of petroleum is just filling the car’s fuel tank. However, drivers are not the only users of oil in form of petrol. There are other uses of oil. Oil is used in the petrochemical industry. In petrochemical processing, it is used as gas and naphtha in order to supply raw materials for textiles and plastics. This is through petroleum chemistry, which is responsible for the formation of plastic products. In most cases, there is a lot of criticism especially to matters regarding plastic. However, plastic is very important in the world today. It is impossible to live without it in the recent days.
Plastic is behind the formation of various types of shoes, chewing gum, throwaway bags (Planet Energy, 2010). The production of plastic started in the twentieth century. This keeps people wondering why the plastic manufacturing started so late, while oil formation started many years’ ago. The explanation was that the refineries that were present had very few outlets. In the 1930s, there was an increase in the production of oil as a result of construction of more outlets. Therefore, the by- products were also in large quantities. Naphtha is one of theses products. It is also refereed to as heavy petrol.
Naphtha was an unstockable and unsaleable material because it was polluting and inflammable (Planet Energy, 2010). To get plastics, naphtha, butane and diesel are put in chemical plants referred to as steam crackers, where the heat in the crackers break down the molecules so as to obtain aromatic hydrocarbons, synthesized gas and alcenes. These polymers take a powdery or granular form. They are transformed so as to give them a certain color, shape and texture. The properties of plastic are also gotten from this stage, which include elasticity and flexibility, soft texture and general resistance to heat and wear, as well as shocks.
The plastics gotten are later used in the textile, cosmetics and plastic industry (Planet Energies, 2010). Plastic is one of the petroleum products which are consequential in any civilized society. The plastic products have been a great source of help in increasing the lives of people. The petrochemical feedstock has been used to supply a large assortment of goods such as paints bases, detergents, fertilizers, synthetic fibers, anti-freeze, cleaning agents, dyes, explosives, industrial reins, varnishes, solvents, thinners and synthetic rubber (E Notes, 2010). Waxes and Lubricants
The major use of petrol distillates is to produce fuels of a lower grade, such as diesel which is used in powerful vehicles’ and kerosene used for heating. However, these distillates are also important as they are a source of very many types of waxes. These waxes are transformed to lining material for various consumer products. A good example is where the lining is used is in raincoats. The lining is used together with the cloth material so as to repel water. Milk cartons also have this lining inside so as to preserve the milk, as well as protect it from spilling.
When cosmetics are packed in containers, the lining is used to cover them so as to prevent unnecessary drying, and to keep the cosmetics in the required temperatures. This lining is also important as it contributes in the making of electrical insulators and medicine tablet coatings. Additionally, the manufacture of sealants, candles and crayons also depends on this lining (E Notes, 2010). Lubricants are also produced as a result of oil. They are very important in everyday life as they assist to overcome machinery friction in the industrial sector.
Additionally, the lubricants are responsible for lubricating sliding doors, surgical medical equipment, sewing needles and heavy loads. They are also used to pull all electrical wires along insulating conduits. As surf boards pass through water bodies, lubricants are used to reduce drag on them. Ordinarily, these lubricants are manufactured as oils and greases, which are of very many types and viscosity (E Notes, 2010). Tar and Bitumen In the oil refinery process, there is a heavy residue which is left over. This residue is usually in the form of pitch, asphalt and tar. Pitch and tar were initially discovered by early man.
They lay in pools or surface seeps, having been cooked from the earth’s surface oil deposits. In the earlier times, the main purpose of theses products was to preserve wood and to seal boats. In the recent days, the heavy forms are in more refined forms. The uses of the refined forms have not changed from the yester years, except that they have also played a part in the construction of roadways (E Notes, 2010). Bitumen is referred to a residue produced during the fractional distillation process of petroleum or coal, or a mixture of organic liquids which occur naturally.
Crude bitumen is the one which occurs naturally, while the refined one is obtained from the fractional distillation process. However, the amounts of bitumen that occur naturally are very limited; therefore, most of the bitumen is gotten from the fractional distillation process of oil (petrol). Ordinarily, bitumen is a “brown- black extremely viscous, tar-like material” (Wise Geek, 2010), which was fully utilized by human beings because of its cohesive and adhesive properties. In North America, bitumen is commonly known as asphalt (Wise Geek, 2010).
The refined bitumen is gotten through the heating of crude oil. The residue gotten is used to manufacture various bitumen grades. Since bitumen is never enough even from the crude oil, recent advancements have resulted to manufacture of bitumen from other sources such as molasses starches, corn and rice (Wise Geek, 2010). Bitumen has a myriad of uses, mostly in the construction industry. Over eighty five percent of bitumen is used in building the roads. Ten percent of the bitumen is applied in roofing. It has proved to be a very efficient material as it is resistant.
The uses of bitumen vary from place to place, depending on the social and geographical contexts. It has been instrumental from the earlier days of civilization. In the earlier times; bitumen was used in building construction, water proofing and a binding element of some complex tools. This is also used today. In Ancient Egypt, bitumen was used as a preservation type. In fact, it is believed that the term ‘mummy’ referring to preservation comes from the bitumen Arabic name, mumiye (Wise Geek, 2010). Economic benefits from the application industries
Bitumen Oil has brought about several economic advantages as far as the production of bitumen is concerned. Since the Bitumen extracted from natural reserves is never enough, most industries make use of the fractional distillation process so as to obtain bitumen from oil. Bitumen is very efficient for the construction of roads in any country. It is effective in paving the roads. Therefore, it usually takes a lot of time for roads constructed using bitumen to wear out. As a result, the countries incur fewer costs in the construction of roads.
Additionally, vehicle accidents are reduced as private car and commercial drivers can drive safely without any mishaps. They are also able to withstand the demands of the high traffic along networks and highways (Shell, 2009). Bitumen has brought life to the rural areas especially in developing countries. Several roads have been constructed s a result of its availability. The economy in theses areas has grown largely as the areas have had complete access to educational and health facilities. The societies can export their farm produce to the towns as the roads are well constructed (Shell, 2009).
Bitumen is known for its unique characteristic of withstanding high pavement stress and extremely heavy loads. Therefore, it is the material used to construct roads in ports and airports. These are very sensitive areas, as the roads are required to be very well constructed to engage in international transport. Therefore, a country with well constructed roads benefits economically from revenues got from trade, which is enhanced by good roads (Shell, 2009). Bitumen industries are a source of employment for very many people in the countries that it is extracted.
This is from the managerial, finance, transport and even the people in the industry who extract the oil by- product during the fractional distillation process. Bitumen is used to make several sealing, roofing and flooring material. As a result, building and construction industries are the some of the consumers of the bitumen products. As a result, the economy benefits a lot because with the rise in population in the globe, there is constant pressure for construction of companies each day (Shell, 2009). Plastics Plastics have benefited the societies economically. Using plastic is preferable as it can be recycled and used again.
Therefore, the industrial sector benefits much from the plastic industry as it save a lot of money from manufacturing others. Therefore, supermarkets and large stores always encourage the customers to bring back the plastic containers to the stalls for recycling. Recycling of plastic contributes to the economy of a country in very many ways. If the plastic is recycled instead of disposing it off, there are reduced amounts of waste which are directed to landfill. This means that the agricultural sector is not going to be affected by polythene and plastics in any way (Waste Online, 2006).
In several countries, recycling of the scrap plastic is referred to as reprocessing, other than recycling. The plastic is reprocessed to other materials, such as tissue paper. Some of the reprocessed substances are also used to make other plastics. This is a great economic benefit as the industries save a lot from reprocessing. Additionally, it is a process which ensures that the economy is clean. As a result the local authority is saved from employing several people who will be responsible for the collection of the plastic wastes, thus benefiting the government economically (Waste Online, 2006).
Recent advancements reveal that there is a way in which plastics can be broken down to polymers so as to make chemicals, or even oil. These processes are referred to as gasification, pyrolysis, thermal cracking and hydrogenation. This process is capita; intensive, but at the end of the day, it is economically viable. However, it requires a lot of used plastic so as to come up with theses reprocessed products (Waste Online, 2006). Recently, there are very many companies which have been started specifically for reprocessing plastic to other useful containers.
These companies have the machines which are able to recycle used polystyrene products. The containers that are processed include meat trays, yoghurt pots, vending cups, fast food boxes and egg cartons. Additionally, products like fibers, bottles, caps, crates, pipes and sheets are also constructed (Waste Online, 2006). Conclusion From this discussion, it is crystal clear that oil has more advantages other than in the energy sector. If well utilized in any country, oil would bring much more benefits from the other by- products.
The only requirement is that the oil producing countries should fund the industrial sector so that it can creatively come up with even more products from oil other than the ones present. Having done that, the other countries will follow suit, so that they can also enjoy the other benefits of oil, other than in the energy sector. References E Notes. (2010). Economic sources of petroleum. Retrieved May 21, 2010 from http://www. enotes. com/earth-science/petroleum-economic-uses Joaquin S. (2010). Petroleum, its uses and benefits. Retrieved May 21, 2010 from
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