Since the appearance of internal combustion engines in automobiles, they have been using oil refinery products: gasoline, diesel fuel, and alternative types: gas, electricity, hydrogen, etc. Both are a mixture of hydrocarbons with additives. The only difference is in the individual characteristics and temperature range. Fuel production includes a complex of technological processes of oil and petroleum products refining.

Gasoline Fuel

Gasoline is easy-boiling liquid hydrocarbons released during the processing of solid fuels, oil distillation, drying of natural gas. The main criterion is detonation resistance, which is characterized by the octane number. The higher it is, the higher the detonation resistance of gasoline. Paraffin hydrocarbons have the worst indicators, while aromatic hydrocarbons have the best ones. Special additives are used to improve the properties.

The second important criterion is the compression ratio. The higher it is, the higher is the engine power, but also the higher is the fuel consumption. The compression ratio and the octane number must correlate with each other.

The fractional gasoline composition directly affects the engine starting, warming up, economy, durability, and absence of vapor plugs. On that basis, gasoline is classified into winter and summer: adapted to specific temperature conditions, according to MaxOil.

(Gasoline Fuel for Cars)

Diesel Fuels

Diesel fuels are the product of distillate fractions in the direct distillation of oil. The main components are cetane and methylnaphthalene. It is a flammable liquid and a low flammability additive. Flammability is the main characteristic, which is expressed in cetane numbers. It is analogous to the octane number for gasoline.

The pumpability of diesel determines its ability to circulate through a system. It depends on the limiting temperature of filterability, turbidity, and solidification temperature. The presence of water and mechanical impurities must also be considered.

(Diesel Fuels for Cars)

Alternative Fuels

There is a growing interest in alternative fuels for cars all over the world: more economical, environmentally friendly, and efficient. They are produced from inexhaustible reserves and create fewer emissions into the atmosphere. Here are some of them:

Natural gas

Available almost everywhere, it emits fewer toxic substances than gasoline or diesel, burns completely when used.

Electricity and Solar Energy

Battery-powered electric cars improve every year. They are plugged into a power source to charge. The electrochemical reaction in the engine does not pollute the environment.

Solar-powered electric cars are not common. These cars are equipped with panels that collect solar energy and battery packs. In the absence of light, the electric car will move using the created energy reserve. The latest models of cars can reach speeds of about 80 mph, and the charge of one battery is sufficient for a distance of about 400 miles. 

(Electricity and Solar Energy: the Alternative Fuel for Cars)

Propane & Methanol

It is already used in households and for heating systems. It is already used in homes and for heating systems.

Wood methyl alcohol is not yet suitable for automobiles but may eventually become a promising alternative source.

Liquid Hydrogen

This fuel is considered the main competitor of gasoline. Several large manufacturers have cars with engines running on hydrogen fuel in their lineup. Most of the units produced are equipped with tanks for gas or diesel fuel and tanks for liquefied gas.

The vehicle switches from one fuel to another automatically with the help of an intelligent fuel optimization system. Aston Martin and BMW present Hydrogen-petrol hybrid cars. Several other automobile giants – Mazda, Nissan, and Toyota – are also planning to develop models that run on hydrogen fuel. This material is environmentally friendly and produces no toxic waste when burned. 

(Liquid Hydrogen: the Alternative Fuel Type For Automobiles)

Biodiesel with Vegetable Oils

Rapeseed, soybean, and sunflower oils are used to make biodiesel. This is an ecological fuel, which is entirely degradable and contains practically no sulfur produced by etherification technology. All types of energy and lubricants are standardized. Getting into the soil or water, such fuel under microorganisms decomposes in 28 days without harming the environment.

They produce both mono variant fuel, consisting entirely of biodiesel and composite materials made from a mixture of gasoline and rapeseed or soybean oil derivatives. Biodiesel is sold freely to individuals and corporate customers. In France, almost all fuel consists of this fuel by 5%.