a sample bottle with oil

oil is, mainly a lipophilic material mixture consisting stored in the earth's crust of hydrocarbons. Oil is at present most important raw material of the modern industrial companies, that for the production of fuels and for the chemical industry outstandingeconomic meaning possesses.

Color and consistency vary of transparency and highly liquidly to jet black and high-viscosity. Oil has a characteristic smell due to the sulfur connections. Some oil places fluoreszieren with the irradiation with ultraviolet light. There are different theories for emergencethe oil.

To table of contents


oil was found already before some thousand years due to the fact that it has a lower density than seawaters and therefore in the cavities the shale, sand and carbonate of sediments afterperhaps rises above and at the earth's surface to light steps (in Germany for example with Hänigsen between Hanover and Braunschweig). If it at impermeable shale or another close rock formation further to ascend cannot and in not too more largelyDeep one to put remains, is it by not very deep drillings to be found.

To oil, which formed materials bitumen-like by the admission of oxygen , out-pouring to the earth's surface, became already before 12000 years in the front Orient, particularly in Mesopotamien,discovered. Humans learned the characteristics of this natural product to use: Thus one received a product by mixing oil with sand, reed and other materials for the sealing of ship planks.

From the Babyloniern the word comes „naptu “(of nabatu =shine) for oil, which in the designation „naphtha has “at present still existence. This expression points on the fact that already early the oil served for lighting purposes. The Babylonier was it also, the important roads and approach roads to cult places alsoa thin bitumen layer took off. The use of „earth pitch “was so pervasive in the Babylonian realm that Hammurabi the material some chapters in its law work 1875 v. Chr. - those granted demonstrably first national adjustment of the oil.

The German designation petroleum is Roman origin: „oleum petrae “, German: Stone or rock oil. This decreases/goes back on discoveries of the Romans in Egypt, where they saw withdrawing in a mountain course at the gulf of Sues oil from the mountains. One assumes that already the Roman army oilas lubricant for axles and wheels used. Oil was used already early as war weapon. In the Byzantine realm in the early Middle Ages with oil quite modern seeming flame thrower was already built, „the Greek fire in such a way specified “, one particularly in the sea-fightdreadful weapon.

Oil was regarded long time also as a cure. During the oil boom years of North America into the 1860er years there were many Quacksalber, who sold the alleged miracle drug against all kinds of physical defects.

The actual exploitation of the Erdöllagerstätten began however onlyin 19. Century. Reason for it was first the search for a good lamp fuel, because whale oil was only for realms affordably, tallow candles skates unpleasant and Gasflammen gave it only in few, modern houses. Different scientists developed thereupon in the center19. Century procedure for the commercial use. The Canadian physician and geologist Abraham Gesner 1852 acquired a patent on the production of a relatively cleanly which is on, low-priced lamp fuel from raw oil: the petroleum. 1855 suggested the American chemist Benjamin Silliman,To clean oil by sulfuric acid, in order to use it as fuel.

Thus one began to look for larger Erdöllagerstätten. For several years one already knew that with drillings after water and salt occasionally oil seeped into the boreholes. Thusone had the idea to bore directly after oil. The first drillings were accomplished 1857 to 1859; one that world-wide first took place 1858 at how/as TZE in Lower Saxony, north of Hanover. However the drilling became world-famous after oil,the Edwin L. Drake to 27. August 1859 at the oil Creek in Pennsylvania accomplished. Drake bored George H. on behalf the American Industriellen Bissell and discovered into only 21.2 meters depth the first larger Öllagerstätte. The first oil promotion in Underground work took place 1854 in Bóbrka at Krosno (Poland).

After the introduction of electrical light oil was first no longer attractive, but soon after the development of the automobile the family Rockefeller set those as a joint founder the standard oil companyUse of the oil product gasoline instead of ethanol first intended by Henry Ford as petrol through.

In the municipality how/as TZE is today the German oil museum.


biogenous tables theory for Erdölentstehung in accordance with developed for oil from sea organisms (Plankton), thosedied, dropped and on the bottom of the sea by sediments were covered. These organic materials were exposed by dropping the sediments to high pressure and high temperature. Under these conditions they changed themselves into Kerogene so mentioned over, organic materials, predominantly outCarbon and hydrogen exist. In the process of the further dia. genesis the Kerogene can become bituminous. Sedimentary rocks, which contain Kerogene, are called oil source rock. An example of an oil source rock also finely distributed bituminous Kerogenen is oil shale from the Lias epsilon (lower law). The finely distributed Kerogene can under certain conditions, particularly at high temperatures, moves, since they are easier than water and are displaced by this. When moving (“migration “of the oil) the Kerogene unites to more compact masses,to oil. The migration runs on the whole upward. If the oil turns out under impermeable earth layers, which prevent its further migration upward and after the sides (Erdölfallen), it enriches itself there and so a Erdöllagerstätte develops. OneErdöllagerstätte consists thus of a memory rock, the oil and more or less stores water in its pores, which itself - if available - likewise in the pores of the memory rock rules. The stores water contains often solved salts. Partly developed under something similarConditions natural gas. Above Erdöllagerstätten therefore a cap from natural gas can be. Sandige sediments near the surface and oil-bearing are called oil sand. Oil is not equivalent compound world-wide. So are for example in some areas more alkanes, in othersmore alkenes contained, also the relationship from aliphatic to aromatic hydrocarbons is different.

A abiogenetischen theory after, which by far less representative than the biogenous tables theory has (see in particular Thomas's gold), exists inside the earth from their emergencelarge quantities of carbon compounds, under it also many hydrocarbons. These carbon compounds are pressed on because of their small density toward earth's surface.


is the Erdöllagerstätte close of the earth's surface, then the oil in the open mining can be won, example: Athabasca Erdölsande, Alberta, Canada.At the beginning of the oil use it was won at some places also in the foundation engineering, for example with how/as TZE, west Celle (Lower Saxony, Germany). From deeper stores oil is promoted by probes, which are brought in by drillings up to stores. Exist also Offshore construction works, which make a promoting possible in the middle in the sea, whereby the drilling platforms are partly replaced later by promotion platforms.

Bild 1: Erdöl-Bohrmeißel mit je 3 gezähnten Kegelrollen
Fig. 1: Oil drilling bit with 3 teethed taper roller bearings each

when boring develops the so-called drillingsmall, that among other things for water, solved polymers and suspended baryte - flour contains. For boring hollow drills are therefore used which permit it to transport drillingsmall from the borehole to light. The drilling tool consists of steel tubes, which to a ever longer tubing linkage, which boring rank, can be together-screwed. At the lowerEnd is the actual drilling tool, the drilling bit in such a way specified. The drilling bit mostly possesses three against each other angularly arranged, toothed taper roller bearings (fig. 1), which can be occupied for boring in hard rock with diamonds, in addition, other forms are used.

Bild 2: Erdölbohrloch mit Bohrmeissel, Längsschnitt, schematisch, oben verrohrt
Picture2: Oil borehole with drilling bit, profile, schematically, above roared

mostly the entire boring rank and concomitantly the drilling bit of a motor driven device over-meet (turntable) turned (Rotary procedures). The drilling bit has a larger diameter than the tubing linkage, so that around the linkagearound a cavity develops (annular space so mentioned), for that for the prevention of its breaking down with a steel tube is lined („Casing “) (fig. 2).

Fig. 3: Oil drilling rig with tubing linkage sections to provoke beside it containers for

the drilling liquid around drillingsmall becomes a drilling liquid by the casing pipepressed in, which withdraws at the crown and is pressed drillingsmall again upward in the annular space as well as that. The drilling liquid must exhibit a high density and a high viscosity, thus it in the hollow drill pipes pressed in and in the annular spaceagain to be pressed out can and thus drillingsmall thereby one drags along.

Every now and then the drilling flushing is used also to propel an engine directly over the drilling bit so that only the drilling bit must be turned, not however entire boring rank.

Around thoseto handle to be able, over the borehole a drilling rig is established to individual pipes of the drill pipes (fig. 3), in which with the Rotary procedure also the turntable is.

If the conditions require it, can be bored also in far elbows, so that oneStores also from the side to be opened can (see: Arrange-bore), for example with stores under settled, difficult, to protecting or militarily used area.

Fig. 4: Oil promotion with a Tiefpumpe

in larger depth stands the oil under that To pressure earth layers load-end and if necessary the associated natural gas and after drilling from the borehole are pressed, since it is easier than water and the surrounding rock. When first drilling stores therefore withdrawing under pressure the standing must Oil with a special device („Preventer “) to be prevented, which is at the upper end of the drill pipes. In the first time the oil can be mostly promoted without further measures by the self-pressure in stores (Primärförderung). The stores pressure diminishes,the oil with Tiefpumpen must be brought to light, those of over-meets by means of drill pipes to be propelled (horse head drive, fig. 4).

Erdölplattform (Bohrinsel) im Meer zum Bohren und Fördern
Oil platform (offshore construction work) in the sea for boring and promoting

the stores pressure can by pressing in water or natural gas by means of throughDrillings of furnished insertion probes to be increased (secondary promotion). The permeability of the memory rock can be increased by pressing in acids, whereby components of the memory rock, for example carbonates, are solved. In the course of the stores exploitation the Wasser-Anteil in the material to be conveyed rises, becomes later in thatRule more water as oil promoted, partially more than 90% water. By primary and secondary promotion procedures about 20 to 50% of the oil depending upon stores conditions, which is in stores („oil into place “, can) is won.The remainder is not replaced by the described promotion procedures from the solids of the memory rock. Further oil can be won however by special procedures (Tertiary period promotion). In addition belong:

  • Heat procedure: Press from hot water or superheated steam („steam floods “) or burning a part of the oil intostores;
  • Press in from N 2 (nitrogen);
  • Press in from CO 2 (carbon dioxide), which increases the stores pressure and in the oil separates and thus its viscosity decreases („CO 2 - tides “);
  • Press in from light gasoline or liquid gas, those likewisethe viscosity of the oil degrade.
  • It presses in from aqueous solutions viscosity of increasing materials (organic polymers) whereby the oil is replaced better from the solids („polymer floods “);
  • Press themselves at the boundary surfaces the oil/solid in from aqueous solutions of boundary surface-active materials (Tenside),and oil/water enrich and so the oil from the solid loosen and in the water divide finely, emulsify („Tensidfluten “).

The Tertiary period procedures are partly also combined. A considerable remainder of the oil can be won however so far with no procedure from stores.

Special one The oil promotion from stores, which are under waters, causes difficulties („offshore production “). Here standing or over it swimming drilling platforms (fig. 5) must be furnished for the development of stores on the waters reason, from which and promoted later can be bored. Herethe arranging boring is favourable, because thereby by a drilling platform a larger area can be opened.


of crude oil prices (nominal and material) since 1900
Ölpreis von 1985 bis 2006 in $ pro Barrel.
oil price from 1985 to 2006 in $ per barrel.

Oil is at present most important raw material of the modern industrial companies. It is important for the production of electricity and as fuel nearly all traffic and of means of transport. Besides oil is often used in the chemical industry for the production of plastics and other chemistry products. From these reasons it becomes also “Black gold “mentioned.

Chemical products of oil

in the oil refinery the oil is split up into its different components. One differentiates oil as natural product of crude oil with respect to the industry before the processing and of mineral oil, like products according to thatProcessing (gasoline, kerosene, fuel oil, lubricating oil) of the oil to be called.

In the chemical industry the oil takes an important on position. Most chemical products leave themselves out approx. 300 basic chemicals develop. These molecular compounds become todayabout. 90% from oil and natural gas won. To these belong:Ethen, Propen, butadiene, benzene, toluol, o xylene, p-xylene (this represent the largest portion). From the world-wide delivery of the oil become approx.6-7% for the chemical product family trees used, the by far larger portion are burned simply in power stations and engines. The importance of these products of oil is obvious: There is no more oil, these basic chemicals over complicated and cost-intensive procedures with high must Energy consumption to be manufactured. The chemical component system of the oil is used, in order to produce nearly each chemical product. In addition colors belong and lacquers, medicaments, wash and cleaning agents, in order to call only some.

                  Oil                   |          (Oil refinery)                   | +---------+-------+  --> more risingBoiling point -->- +----------------+ |          |                |            |            |                 |
Gases     Gasoline          Kerosene        Gas oil--+-----Vacuum gas oil      Arrears\      /   |               |            |     |      |                 | \    / Gasoline     Flugbenzin        Diesel,  |   Lubricating oils       heavy fuel oil,  fuel oil  \/                              easy  |    Tenside          Bitumen   \/                                Fuel oil   |                     Coke,  soot (Pyrolysis)                                     |    |                                         |Olefine and                                 Cracken Aromatics                                     |    |                                    Gasoline(Reactions)    |  Monomers    | (Polymerization)    |Plastics

financial system

as central raw material is oil also the subject of the speculation. Oil is acted even in goods option dealings (oil contracts); the oil price affects also the general stock exchange courses, because in many industries a dependence on the oil price exists or is seen. Two very important crude oil places are Brent and west Texas Intermediate.

World reserves and provision with stocks

picture: Occurrences and assisted areas of the earth (without the USA)

for the year 2004 became the confirmed world reserves depending upon source on 1260 billion barrel (171.7 billion tons after Öldorado 2004 of ExxonMobil) and/or. on 1148 billion Barrel (156.6 billion tons after BP Statistical Review 2004) computes. The science magazine Science proceeded 2004 even from reserves with altogether three trillion barrel. The reserves, which are located and are economically won with the technology today the availablecan, increased in the last years despite the annual deliveries easily in each case and achieved in the year 2004 the highest ever computed conditions. While the reserves in the Near East, Eastern Asia and South America due to the exhaustion of stores and more insufficiently Folder ion activity sank, rose they in Africa and Europe easily. It is forecast that the Erdölreserven can cover only 50 years the world consumption. The fact that similar, not occurred forecasts were already met in the past, has the term Oil constant brought out. In the year 2003 the largest Erdölreserven were in Saudi Arabia (262.7 billion barrel), in Iran (130.7 billion barrel) and in the Iraq (115.0 billion barrel), whereupon followed the united Arab emirates, Kuwait and Venezuela (see 1 for oneexact table).

Critics of these data point out however that the numbers were falsified frequently for political reasons. Besides many countries announce the same numbers annually, although they promote at the same time large quantities oil; the numbers are often not adapted thus. Over itoutside becomes according to estimations of independent experts in the first decade 21. Century the point of the Hubbert curve well-known as peak oil to be reached. Reaching this 'oil promotion maximum '(“peak”) means that world-wide the promotion and/or. Production of oil no more does not increasewill can. In the consequence of peak oil the oil price will rise inevitably and to a considerable degree, since with constantly growing consumption the offer cannot serve the demand any longer.

The countries of the European union are obligated, a 90-Tage-Vorrat at oilto maintain for crisis periods. A large part of the Germans and a smaller part of the foreign supplies lie in the underground Kavernenanlagen in the carousing A SALt in the area Wilhelmshaven, where also most oil is introduced to Germany.


diagram of the largestOil companies

so far were promoted in the history of mankind approximately 900 billion barrel oil. Most reserves were discovered into the 1960er years. Starting from beginning of the 1980er years is the annual promotion (2005) about 30.4 billion barrel (83.3 million barrelper day [1]) - over the capacity of the again discovered reserves, so that since this time the existing reserves decrease. Deshalb wird von den meisten Experten mit einem Fördermaximum (→ Peak-Oil) zwischen 2010 und 2020 gerechnet. Some go evenof it out that the maximum will occur still before 2010 or even already occurred (Kenneth Deffeyes, Colin J. Campbell, Jean Laherrere). The economic problem consists of the fact that with reaching this world-wide promotion maximum oil ever more scarcely andwill become more expensive, because then the daily oil need will be larger than the daily oil delivery. There since the eighties 20. Century world-wide more oils used up than it is found are also the numerical data problematic, which mean that under presentConditions - static range is called with same consumption,) - which Erdöl-Reserven will hand still to 2048/49. Besides this misleading, there daily oil consumption is in the course of the last decades always rose itself and this trend by thatlarge economic growth above all China and India strengthened. The moreover one it is improbable in opinion of experts that in the future larger oil fields are found, which could cover the need. Other oil deposits such as Ölsand would be enough still longer, would requirebut a much higher energy expenditure with the dismantling.

Main promoters of oil were in the year 2003 Saudi Arabia (496.800 million tons), Russia (420.000 million tons), the USA (349.400 million tons), Mexico (187.800 million tons) and Iran (181.700 million tons); the entire Weltförderung was attached3.608, 600 million tons (see 1 for an exact table). The oil promotion in Germany is insignificant in the international comparison and takes place almost exclusively in the Lands of the Federal Republic Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony.

World consumption

Rohölimporte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland seit 1970
of crude oil imported goods of the Federal Republic of Germany since 1970

daily consumption world-wideis appropriate with approximately 84 million barrel. The USA (20.1 million barrel), People's Republic of China (6 million barrel), Japan (5.5 million barrel) and Germany (2.7 million barrel) were in the year 2003 main consumers of the oil (see 1 for an exact table). The world consumptionrises at present around 2% per year.

The annual per-capita consumption is at the industrial nations clearly more highly than with developing countries. Thus consumption lay in the USA 2003 with 26,0 barrels per inhabitant, in Germany at 11,7, during in Chinastatistically on each inhabitant 1.7 barrels came, into India 0.8 and into Bangladesh only 0.2 barrels per head were used.

Germany imported 2004 110.140 million tons crude oil in the year. Main countries of importation are Russia, Norway, Great Britain and the OPEC state Libya.


due toits economic meaning is oil also the subject of political arguments. The profit from the oil production exists in the difference of the promotion price of approx. 5$ per barrel (1 barrel = approx. 159 litres oil) at the world price of approx. 60$ - altogether thusan annual clear profit of over 1.3 trillion dollar. In the oil crisis the OPEC tried to exert influence on the Middle East conflict. Also the present wars and crises around the Iraq are according to opinion of many critics arguments around the entrance toOil.

Since the oil deposits of the world are finite, ways are looked for, regenerativ forms of energy as for example solar power, wind energy, terrestrial heat, bio Diesel, to use vegetable oil. Germany is strongly import dependent in the range oil. Therefore the oil provision with stocks federation is also since 1978the creation of an oil contingency reserve assigns.

The products of the oil (gasoline and fuel oil) represent at the same time a compact medium, in order to store or transport energy. As alternative about the use of hydrogen as energy storage one thinks. In addition must it however only once under very high energy expenditure by means of electrolysis or other procedures of water to be made. Then it must for transport e.g. are liquefied. In addition much energy is used again. Hydrogen could directly burned (thermal use) or by means of Gas cells into electricity to be converted and engines (for example in the electric vehicle) propel.

The density of oil (particularly crude oil) is measured in API degrees. The space measure of oil is measured in barrels.

The processing chains in the oil industry become by the terms Downstream and Upstream characterize.

In the trade and also at the stock exchanges distinctive between “sour” (sour) and “sweet” (sweet) crude oil (crude oil), whereby it is then again differentiated between heavy (heavy) oreasy (light). The classifications serve for the classification of the turning and/or. Refining barness. “Sour” means that the crude oil has higher sulfur content. For this reason refining is more complex.


oil is transported world-wide over far distances. The transport ofthe promotion places at the consumers happens by the sea route with oiling anchors, over country predominantly by means of pipings (pipelines).


in the course of the past decades have the oil production and its accompaniments in some developing countries substantial economic, social and ecological problemscaused. Pipelines are tapped and whole tankers for example in Nigeria by armed groups are kidnapped, around the won property (approx. 2,25 millions To sell barrel on day) against weapons with Hehlern, there many armed groups of the Niger delta itself of the stateoften betrayed and particularly of the larger mineral oil companies bestohlen and exploited feel. This led among other things to the blind force on the part of the state, whereby a whole town was made equal to the ground.Shell spoke of 1000 force victims annually, amnesty internationallyon the other hand of approximately 500 victims alone in one week.

Often oil arrives into the groundwater o.a. Likewise immense damage for the ecological system , if larger quantities of oil are ignited, develops there for example a burning source of oil or possibly. even Oil field to delete with difficulty is. Also Tankerunfälle can be very harmful for the environment and get dirty whole sand beaches with tar lumps or cover with a black oil carpet. Many animals, with priority birds, which the oil sticks the plumage together and whose food spoils,end elendig. It also occurs that oiling anchors on the sea rinse their tanks out with sea water, on the one hand for cleaning, on the other hand, because they must have loaded certain quantities of water from stability reasons as ballast.See also: Exxon Valdez



  • Wolfgang Gründinger: Case of energy. A review of the oil age. Munich: C.H. Beck, March 2006. - 1. Edition. - ISBN 3-40654-098-8
  • Robert H. Motzkuhn: The fight for the oil. Tübingen: Hohenrain publishing house, November 2005. - 1. Edition. - ISBN 3-89180-077-0
  • F. William Engdahl:With the oil weapon to the world power. The way to the new world order. Gang castle A. N.: Kopp, December 2005. - ISBN 3-93851-619-4 (see. [2])
  • smelling pool of broadcasting corporations Heinberg: The Party's Over. The end of the Ölvorräte and the future of the industrializedWorld. Munich: Riemann publishing house, 2004. - ISBN 3-57050-059-4
  • Rudolf Rechsteiner: Green wins. 2003. - ISBN 3-28005-054-5 (Download as pdf file [3]; from the author and even in the net posed) Colin
  • J. approves. Campbell: Oil change! 2002. - ISBN 3-42324-321-X
  • Daniel Yergin: ThatPrice. The hunt for oil, money and power. Frankfurt, 1991. - ISBN 3-10095-804-7
  • Thomas's gold: Biosphere of the hot depth. Wiesbaden, 2000. - ISBN 3-98073-780-2
  • author collective: To the political economics of the oil - a strategic property and its price, in: Point of article1-01. - ISSN 0941-5831
  • author collective: The oil, in: Imperialism 3, S. 169-194. Munich, 1981. - to ISBN 3-92293-501-X

see also

Web on the left of

Commons: Oil - pictures, videos and/or audio files
Wiktionary: Oil- Word origin, synonyms and translations

museums in Germany


This article was taken up to the list of the articles worth reading.

  > German to English > de.wikipedia.org (Machine translated into English)