Petroleum or crude oil is a naturally occurring flammable liquid consisting of a complex mixture of hydrocarbons of various molecular weights and other organic compounds. Crude oil is found in geologic formations beneath the Earth's surface and recovered mostly through oil drilling. It is refined into a large number of consumer products from gasoline and kerosene to asphalt and chemical reagents used to make plastics and pharmaceuticals.
Crude oil varies greatly in appearance depending on its composition. It is usually black or dark brown (although it may be yellowish, reddish, or even greenish). In the reservoir it is usually found in association with natural gas and saline water. Crude oil may also be found in semi-solid form mixed with sand and water, as in the Athabasca oil sands in Canada. This crude is usually referred to as crude bitumen. In Canada, bitumen is considered a sticky, black, tar-like form of crude oil which is so thick and heavy that it must be heated or diluted before it will flow. These oil sands resources are called unconventional oil to distinguish them from oil which can be extracted using traditional oil well methods.
Petroleum is used mostly for producing fuel oil and gasoline, both important "primary energy" sources. 84% by volume of the hydrocarbons present in crude is converted into energy-rich fuels (petroleum-based fuels), including gasoline, diesel, jet, heating and other fuel oils and liquefied petroleum gas. As the world's reserves of light and medium crude oil are depleted, oil refineries are having to process heavy oil and bitumen and use more complex and expensive methods to produce refined products.
Source Oil & Asphalt Supply specializes in trading and delivering a wide variety of crude oil to our customers.