Downstream | Fundamentals
The purpose of refining is to transform the various kind of crude oil into finished products that meet certain precise specifications.
The range and quality of refined petroleum products produced by any given refinery depend on the type of crude oil used as feedstock and on the configuration of the refinery. Light and sweet crude oils are more expensive and generate greater yields of higher value refined petroleum products, such as gasolines, diesel and aviation fuels. Heavier and more sour crude oil qualities are less expensive and generate greater yields of lower value petroleum products, such as fuel oils.
The configuration of certain refineries is typically oriented towards the production of gasoline whereas the configuration of others is oriented towards the production of middle distillates, such as diesel fuel and aviation fuels.
Crude Oil Refining