American Petroleum Institute (API)

Definition - What does American Petroleum Institute (API) mean?

API is an acronym for American Petroleum Institute, which is an organization that standardizes most of the oilfield drilling and producing equipment. It has publications, standards, recommended practices and bulletins. Most of the oil and gas organizations follow API standards. It consists of 400 Corporations in the Petroleum Industry that helps to set standards for the production, refinement, and distribution of crude oil and petroleum products.

Petropedia explains American Petroleum Institute (API)

The American Petroleum Institute plays an important role in deciding the price of crude oil by specifying its API gravity. API gravity can be referred to as crude oil viscosity check i.e., how heavy or light it is as compared to water. The API values for various classification categories of crude oil are as follows:

  • Light – API > 31.1
  • Medium – API between 22.3 and 31.1
  • Heavy – API < 22.3
  • Extra Heavy – API < 10.0
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