FSC 432
Petroleum Processing

Welcome to FSC 432: Petroleum Processing!



Please watch the following introductory video.

Video: FSC 432 Introduction (2:32)

Click here for transcript of FSC 423 Introduction.

Hello. My name is Semih Eser. I'm a Professor of Energy and Geo-environmental Engineering. Welcome to Fuel Science 432, Petroleum Processing. I hope that you'll enjoy this course where we will talk about all kinds of fuels and materials, and chemicals made from crude oil.

You probably hear the noise from the street, all the vehicles passing by. Automobiles, trucks, and buses, they all operate on petroleum-derived fuels. If you hear a plane passing by, that's also using jet fuel produced from petroleum.

Now there are essentially two sectors when we talk about crude oil petroleum. The sector that generates the crude oil, produces crude oil from the ground is essentially the upstream sector. But we will be concerning ourselves in this course with the downstream processing, which is essentially refining.

Now petroleum refinery is probably the most intricate set of chemical and physical processes that take a natural material we call crude oil, that contains millions of compounds, convert them into fuels, and materials, and chemicals as we know and use them. It is really a showcase for process engineering or for chemical engineering. So I really look forward to an exciting semester of learning how petroleum refinery operates.

How do we classify crude oil? Why are there different crude oils? And what do we really do with the crude oil in this integration of a number of chemical and physical processes? You'll get to know the terms such as cracking, polymerization, delayed coking, alkylation-- all kinds of interesting names. But by the end of the semester, you will know what all these terms mean and how they are connected.

I wish you a good semester of learning and see you in lessons and other class activities. Again, welcome to Fuel Science 432, Petroleum Processing. Thank you.

Quick Facts about FSC 432

  • Instructor - Dr. Semih Eser, Professor of Energy and Geo-Environmental Engineering, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences
  • Overview - FSC 432 This course addresses petroleum refining to review how a variety of physical processes and chemical reactions in separate refinery units are integrated to process compliant fuels and materials. We will study physical and chemical processes that convert crude oil into desired products, with an outlook from present to future.
  • Learning Environment - This website provides the primary instructional materials for the course. The Resources menu at the left links to important supporting materials, while the Course Outline menu links to the course lessons. Canvas, Penn State's course management system, is used to support the delivery of this course as well, as it provides the primary communications, calendaring, and submission tools for the course.
  • Topics of Study - The content of this course is divided into 12 lessons. Each lesson will be completed in approximately 1 week.
    • Lesson 1: Introduction to Petroleum Refining and Crude Oil Composition
    • Lesson 2: Properties and Classification of Crude Oil
    • Lesson 3: Overall Refinery Flow
    • Lesson 4: Separation Processes 1
    • Lesson 5: Separation Processes 2
    • Lesson 6: Thermal Conversion Processes
    • Lesson 7: Catalytic Conversion Processes, Part 1
    • Lesson 8: Catalytic Conversion Processes, Part 2
    • Lesson 9: Finishing Processes
    • Lesson 10: Supporting Processes
    • Lesson 11: Past and Future of Petroleum Refining
    • Lesson 12: Natural Gas Processing

This course will enable the students to:

  • understand what crude oils consist of and how crude oils are characterized based on their physical properties;
  • express the objectives of petroleum refining and classify the processes used in petroleum refining;
  • demonstrate how a petroleum refinery works with integration of all refining processes and the resulting refinery products; and
  • examine how each refinery process works, with focus on physical and chemical principles that drive each refinery process.

Registered students should log in to the site using the LOGIN link in the main menu, above. The main menu also gives you access to the syllabus and the lessons for this course.