SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPUTNIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Oil refinery. Smoke and flames rising from a flare at an oil refinery. Flares are used to burn off excess gas, often as a safety measure. An oil refinery is where oil is refined from the crude state (in which it is pumped from the ground) into the separate components used as fuels and as the raw materials for the petrochemical industry. This refinery is in the Priobski oil field. Photographed in November 2005, in the Khanty-Mansi autonomous region of Russia.
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