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RE: Fill her up! - 10/17/2008 7:39:09 AM   
Raverdave


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From: Melb. Australia
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Currently we are paying Aussie $1.56 per liter.

(US$4.04 per gallon)

(EuR$ 0.79 per liter)

( GBP$ 0.62 per liter)




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Post #: 31
RE: Fill her up! - 10/17/2008 4:54:19 PM   
Prince of Eckmühl


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Raverdave

Currently we are paying Aussie $1.56 per liter.

(US$4.04 per gallon)

(EuR$ 0.79 per liter)

( GBP$ 0.62 per liter)


Prices down the street have sunk to $2.72.9 as of today. I'm surprised that prices are that high in Australia, what with Indonesia being right next door. You must be paying a heft tax on your petrol.


_____________________________

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Post #: 32
RE: Fill her up! - 10/17/2008 8:28:26 PM   
Jeffrey H.


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From: San Diego, Ca.
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Prince of Eckmühl


quote:

ORIGINAL: 06 Maestro

POE

I recognize the basic truths to your points, however, the situation still is odd. For many decades (except WW2) the U.S. oil companies maintained surplus production capacity. That was during times of huge increases of domestic use. To my knowledge, diesel was always cheaper. I am certainly not an expert, but it seems likely that you can get much more diesel from a barrel of oil than you can gasoline from a barrel of oil.

I know that diesel demand has increased, but it seemed predictable that this would occur. It appears that the oil companies have intentionally let production (comparatively to gas) lag so as to maximize profits on an item that is cheaper for them to produce. either that, or the current bosses are just not as savvy as the oil bosses of years gone by.

It also seems to me that diesel is a much more efficient fuel. If I am correct, then it should have priority on production expansion-not the other way around.


There are these industrial facilities called oil refineries, many of which have the ability to produce diesel fuel, but not necessarily at the same volume as they produce other fuels, like gasoline or heating-oil. The parts of the refinery that produce gasoline, for instance, are not the same parts that produce diesel. The only way that a refiner is gonna be able to produce more end-product is to expand it's diesel-refining capacity. They can't just flip a switch and produce diesel from the same equimpment with which they produce gasoline.

You are right to be circumspect about the situation, because refiners could indeed convert more of the plant's hardware to diesel production. They don't do so, because they make more money off of diesel than gasoline. Again, the fact that the US has been exporting diesel, most notably to China, and normally limits all imports of distillates exacerbates the problem.

PoE (aka ivanmoe)


Now we're getting somewhere. The first thing that enters my mind is supply and demand. But it is also true that diesel is heavier than gasoline and hence takes less refining. I think the yield per barrel of crude would be higher for refining diesel vs. any type of lighter distillate, but that is too simplistic of a viewpoint.

Limited capacity, no imports and high export prices just about sums it up.



_____________________________

History began July 4th, 1776. Anything before that was a mistake.

Ron Swanson

(in reply to Prince of Eckmühl)
Post #: 33
RE: Fill her up! - 10/18/2008 12:16:17 AM   
ilovestrategy


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From: San Diego
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I live across the street from my work.    *dodges flurry of WiTP discs.* 

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Post #: 34
RE: Fill her up! - 10/18/2008 12:54:59 AM   
Phatguy

 

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Come on up to Sunny Buffalo New York and pay over 3.50 a gallon!

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Post #: 35
RE: Fill her up! - 10/18/2008 3:42:09 AM   
Mike Dubost

 

Posts: 273
Joined: 8/24/2008
From: Sacramento, CA
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Jeffrey H.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Prince of Eckmühl


quote:

ORIGINAL: 06 Maestro

POE

I recognize the basic truths to your points, however, the situation still is odd. For many decades (except WW2) the U.S. oil companies maintained surplus production capacity. That was during times of huge increases of domestic use. To my knowledge, diesel was always cheaper. I am certainly not an expert, but it seems likely that you can get much more diesel from a barrel of oil than you can gasoline from a barrel of oil.

I know that diesel demand has increased, but it seemed predictable that this would occur. It appears that the oil companies have intentionally let production (comparatively to gas) lag so as to maximize profits on an item that is cheaper for them to produce. either that, or the current bosses are just not as savvy as the oil bosses of years gone by.

It also seems to me that diesel is a much more efficient fuel. If I am correct, then it should have priority on production expansion-not the other way around.


There are these industrial facilities called oil refineries, many of which have the ability to produce diesel fuel, but not necessarily at the same volume as they produce other fuels, like gasoline or heating-oil. The parts of the refinery that produce gasoline, for instance, are not the same parts that produce diesel. The only way that a refiner is gonna be able to produce more end-product is to expand it's diesel-refining capacity. They can't just flip a switch and produce diesel from the same equimpment with which they produce gasoline.

You are right to be circumspect about the situation, because refiners could indeed convert more of the plant's hardware to diesel production. They don't do so, because they make more money off of diesel than gasoline. Again, the fact that the US has been exporting diesel, most notably to China, and normally limits all imports of distillates exacerbates the problem.

PoE (aka ivanmoe)


Now we're getting somewhere. The first thing that enters my mind is supply and demand. But it is also true that diesel is heavier than gasoline and hence takes less refining. I think the yield per barrel of crude would be higher for refining diesel vs. any type of lighter distillate, but that is too simplistic of a viewpoint.

Limited capacity, no imports and high export prices just about sums it up.





It's been over 15 years since my Chemical Engineering classes, but if my memory is correct, there yield per barrel is not really related to the weight of the distillate. The distilling process separates the different fractions by the "weight" which is a function of the length of the carbon chain in the molecule. The lighter (shorter chain) fractions can be "combined" into a heavier (longer chain) output, or the heavier fractions can be "cracked" into lighter fractions, up to a point. Based on this, I think the amount of each fraction you get (prior to combining or cracking) is strictly a function of the crude oil input and the efficiency of your distillation columns.

I could be wrong about this, given the lapse of time, as I never went into the Petrochemical business.

(in reply to Jeffrey H.)
Post #: 36
RE: Fill her up! - 10/19/2008 12:00:42 AM   
Jeffrey H.


Posts: 3154
Joined: 4/13/2007
From: San Diego, Ca.
Status: offline
I'm not a petroleum engineer either. I should know more about it. My view is very simplistic and you could be correct, when various processing techniques are taken into account, it may be possible to yield more or less diesel from a barrel of crude.

In general, I recall that the boiling process is continuous, with lighter elements boiled off first and then gradually heaveir and heaveir compouds are boiled off. What you are left with is essentially clods of tar that go into roofing products and paving materials.

Although this process would inherently yield variable weight distillates, I suppose you could blend them back to maintain a unifrom density requirement.

Anyway, I'm sure that the 'real' process is significantly more complicated than this.




_____________________________

History began July 4th, 1776. Anything before that was a mistake.

Ron Swanson

(in reply to Mike Dubost)
Post #: 37
RE: Fill her up! - 10/19/2008 12:04:36 AM   
junk2drive


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From: Arizona West Coast
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My understanding was that gasoline became the automotive choice because it was a leftover from the refining process and therefore cheap. Way back when anyway.

(in reply to Jeffrey H.)
Post #: 38
RE: Fill her up! - 10/19/2008 3:13:53 AM   
Prince of Eckmühl


Posts: 2456
Joined: 6/25/2006
From: Texas
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quote:

ORIGINAL: junk2drive

My understanding was that gasoline became the automotive choice because it was a leftover from the refining process and therefore cheap. Way back when anyway.


Nah, it assumed its role as a fuel of choice in internal-internal combustion engines because of it's explosive characteristics as part of a fuel-air mixture. Because of those characteristics, it can be used effectively in engines with far lower compression-ratios than diesels. It's not perfect in that regard, and is graded by expensive anti-knock additives that are included after it's distilled. Without the additives, the engine can/will destroy itself, depending on it's tolerances and compression ratio.

Take a look a this:




While a wild simplification of the process, the diagram demonstrates a shortcoming of diesel. It has to go through additional processes, called coking and alkylation, that gasoline doesn't. This doesn't have any great impact in terms of cost, but it does require the installation and maintenance of additional equipment, and can seriously limit the ability of a refinery to churn out diesel, relative to the same plant's capicity to output gasoline.

BTW, we may be leaving the realm of matrix game's general discussion forum.

PoE (aka ivanmoe)

Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Prince of Eckmühl -- 10/19/2008 3:36:52 AM >


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Government is the opiate of the masses.

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Post #: 39
RE: Fill her up! - 10/19/2008 3:42:15 AM   
Prince of Eckmühl


Posts: 2456
Joined: 6/25/2006
From: Texas
Status: offline
I took my wife out to get a gyro this evening, and the gas station that I last cited had unleaded priced at $2.67.9. My, how the once mighty are all a tumble!

PoE (aka ivanmoe)


_____________________________

Government is the opiate of the masses.

(in reply to Prince of Eckmühl)
Post #: 40
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