Motor Fuel

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Motor Fuel


liquid or gaseous fuel used in internal-combustion engines (piston, jet, and gas-turbine engines). Motor fuels are divided into the following groups: carburetor fuels, including aviation and automobile gasolines, tractor kerosine, and diesel fuel, and fuels for various other purposes, such as gas-turbine and rocket fuels.

Motor fuels are produced from oil and gaseous hydrocarbons. They are among the main products of petroleum processing, accounting for about 63 percent of the consumption of petroleum products. A motor fuel usually consists of mixtures of several components, including the base fuel and additives (antiknock agents, antioxidants, corrosion inhibitors, and so on). The base fuels consist of products of straight-run distillation of petroleum (gasolines, ligroins, kerosine and gas oil, and heavier fractions), and also of secondary refining (catalytic cracking, re-forming, and so on). The components may include iso-octane, isopentane, alkylbenzenes, and gasoline.

Motor fuels that are similar in composition to petroleum fuels may be produced by processing solid fossil fuels, such as coal or shale. The production of motor fuels from solid fossil fuels reached a high level of development in Germany during World War II (1939–45): about 4 million tons was produced in 1943, mainly by hydrogenation of coal. After the war, the production of motor fuels by this process was discontinued because it could not compete economically with the production of motor fuels from petroleum. However, a great deal of attention is being devoted to this process of motor fuel production in several countries, among them the USA and Canada, and the construction of large manufacturing installations is being planned.


Tovamye nefteprodukty, ikh svoistva i primenenie: Spravochnik. Edited by N. G. Puchkov. Moscow, 1971.
Zarubezhnye topliva, masla i prisadki. Edited by I. V. Rozhkov and B. V. Losikov. Moscow, 1971.
Bobrov, N. N., and P. I. Voropai. Primenenie topliv i smazochnykh materialov, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1968.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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