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What are petrochemicals?

The building blocks of almost every product we use.

Facts
If you can imagine it, our products are part of it.

Petrochemicals are the building blocks that are essential to making the goods that make modern life possible — from paints to plastics, space suits to solar panels, medicines to mobile phones.

The petrochemical manufacturing process begins with a “feedstock”.

A feedstock is a raw material that is used to make a useful product in an industrial process. Natural gas liquids and naphtha that is created from crude oil during the refining process are used as feedstocks to manufacture a wide variety of petrochemicals.

The six basic petrochemicals are ethylene, propylene, butylenes, benzene, toluene, and xylenes.

These six petrochemicals can be made into plastics, nylons, polyesters, etc., that are then transformed into items like bicycle helmets, lightweight car bumpers, space suits, medical devices and wind turbines.

Did you know?

Petrochemicals and the specialty chemicals created from them have special properties that simply make the products we use better. They make nylon stronger, so seatbelts and parachute straps are safer. They make workout clothes sweat resistant. They make cars lighter, so they are more fuel efficient.

Petrochemical Manufacturing Process