How many gallons of gas can be produced from one barrel of crude oil?

I assume there is much variation as to the quality and composition of a barrel of crude, but I would like to know: If I were to buy a barrel of that ‘approx. 0-per-barrel-crude’, how much gas (assuming I had the equipment, etc) could I derive from it?

One Response to “How many gallons of gas can be produced from one barrel of crude oil?”

  1. Flyboy Says:

    A barrel of oil is about 44 gallons. It is a mixture of many different hydrocarbons. Some of these occur naturally in that barrel as gasoline products and can be recovered by distillation and condensation – all pretty straight forward. The actual content of these varies by the source of the crude oil.

    Here’s the rub: Much of the remaining part of the 44 gallons consists of higher molecular weight components that are not part of a gallon of gasoline. But, they can by catalytically "cracked" into lower molecular weight components that can be "reformed" into other petroleum products including gasoline.

    So, there really is no good answer to your question as the answer is the choice of the refiner who will make the decision based upon demand for various petroleum products. From a practical standpoint about the most gasoline than can come from a 44-gallon barrel is probably around 35-38 gallons. The rest is tar and heavier components that can’t be profitably turned into gasoline or any lighter components.

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