Press "Enter" to skip to content

What is the cracking process?

Cracking, in petroleum refining, the process by which heavy hydrocarbon molecules are broken up into lighter molecules by means of heat and usually pressure and sometimes catalysts. Cracking is the most important process for the commercial production of gasoline and diesel fuel.

What is cracking used for?

Cracking is a process used in oil refineries in order to derive saleable byproducts from crude oil. Some forms of oil, such as light sweet crude, require relatively limited refining in order to be sold.

What are the types of thermal cracking?

Thermal cracking remains important, for example in producing naphtha, gas oil, and coke, and more sophisticated forms of thermal cracking have been developed for various purposes. These include visbreaking, steam cracking, and coking.

What are the conditions needed for cracking?

Cracking and alkenes

  • Catalytic cracking uses a temperature of approximately 550°C and a catalyst known as a zeolite which contains aluminium oxide and silicon oxide.
  • Steam cracking uses a higher temperature of over 800°C and no catalyst.

What is the difference between catalytic cracking and thermal cracking?

The main difference between thermal cracking and catalytic cracking is that thermal cracking uses heat energy for the breakdown of compounds whereas catalytic cracking involves a catalyst to obtain products.

What are the products of cracking?

Cracking is a process in which long chain hydrocarbon molecules are broken down into smaller, more useful hydrocarbon molecules. The original starting hydrocarbons are alkanes . The products of cracking include alkanes and alkenes , members of a different homologous series .

Is Cracking a chemical process?

Cracking is a chemical process which is used in oil refining. To produce by-products such as cooking oil, ethanol, liquefied petroleum gas, diesel fuel, jet fuel and other petroleum distillates, cracking removes large hydrocarbon molecules in raw crude oil.

Why do we do cracking in chemistry?

Cracking allows large hydrocarbon molecules to be broken down into smaller, more useful hydrocarbon molecules. Fractions containing large hydrocarbon molecules are heated to vaporise them.

How is cracking done using a catalytic cracking?

Cracking is the name given to breaking up large hydrocarbon molecules into smaller and more useful bits. This is achieved by using high pressures and temperatures without a catalyst, or lower temperatures and pressures in the presence of a catalyst.

What can butane be cracked into?


  • Cracking hexane to form butane and ethene.
  • Cracking hexane to form butane and ethene.
  • Cracking hexane to form butane and ethene.

What is the element symbol of bromine?