PAUL RAPSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL RAPSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Petrol in a beaker. Petrol (also called gasoline) is a product of the refining of crude oil. Crude oil is a mixture of hydrocarbons that is heated to separate it into parts called fractions. The lighter hydrocarbon fractions boil off and leave the heavier fractions behind. Petrol is collected in the range 40-205 degrees Celsius, and has hydrocarbons with 5-12 carbon atoms. Petrol is used as a fuel in motor vehicles. To compare the colour and viscosity of crude oil and its fractions, see T110/483-491 and T110/492-501.
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