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Propane is a popular gas used for heating and cooking purposes by households throughout the world. But where does it come from? Propane is actually a by-product of natural gas processing and petroleum refining. It is considered a clean fuel source since it has fewer emissions than other hydrocarbon fuels like gasoline and diesel.
How is Propane Formed
Propane is formed when natural gas undergoes fractional distillation, which separates heavier components like propane, butanes, and ethane from the lighter molecules of methane. Once these heavy molecules are separated out, they are sent through additional steps in processing such as desulfurization and dehydration to remove sulfur dioxide, hydrogen sulfide, water, and other impurities that could cause corrosion or damage to the propane itself.
Who Knew Propane Molecule Could Be So Important
Another way propane can be produced is from refinery gases, which are generated during crude oil refining processes. Refinery gases contain small amounts of propylene that can be converted into propane using a process called catalytic reforming. This process involves passing the refinery gases through a catalyst bed that helps break down larger molecules into smaller ones along with increasing their octane rating. The resulting product is refined propane ready for use in both commercial and residential applications.
Dependable Energy With A Low Carbon Footprint
Because of its low emissions profile compared to other fuel sources, propane has become an increasingly popular choice for people looking to reduce their carbon footprint while still enjoying the convenience of using a dependable energy source at home or in business operations. As such, more industries are investing in technologies that enable the production of clean-burning fuels such as propane so they can meet environmental standards while providing reliable energy to consumers everywhere.