Oil Refinery

Definition - What does Oil Refinery mean?

Oil Refinery, also known as Petroleum Refinery, is an industrial process plant that primarily processes crude oil into more valuable refined products. These refined products are known as refinery cuts or petroleum products, or simply products. They are more valuable than the crude oil as they are readily used as a fuel source (or feedstock) in all types of industries. Basically, these products re-fuel the entire industrialization.

Petropedia explains Oil Refinery

The oil and gas industry is divided into three key areas, i.e., upstream, midstream and downstream. An oil refinery is a part of the midstream sector of the oil and gas industry. In order to setup a midstream sector, refineries, pipelines and other infrastructures which transport crude oil to refineries for further processing need to be setup in an efficient and planned manner. Refineries house a large number of chemical engineering unit processes which are useful in converting raw crude oil into useful and valuable petroleum products. The following are some of the petroleum products obtained when crude oil is fed into a crude distillation unit (CDU), the very first processing unit of a refinery:

  • LPG
  • Naphtha
  • Gasoline or Petrol
  • Kerosene (as well as varieties of Jet fuel)
  • Diesel
  • Fuel oil or Furnace Oil
  • Lubricating Oil
  • Bitumen (Paraffin Wax, Asphalt, Tar, coke)
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