What is Ethylene?
Ethylene is the simplest unsaturated hydrocarbon, obtained mainly through the process of molecular breakdown of hydrocarbons such as ethane, light and heavy naphtha in petrochemicals, and is the first member of the group of alkenes. Its chemical formula is C2H4, there is a double bond between two carbon atoms.
Odorless ethylene gas, is a colorless gas which created in nature as well as by artificial sources, is not easily detected, it is produced and stored in nature. Its largest producers are plants (such as fruits, vegetables, and flowers), and plants produce it in their tissues and release it around the atmosphere, as well as being artificially made, which is flammable.
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History of Ethylene
In 1795, ethylene gas was called olefin gas. The first synthesis of ethylene gas compounds (dichlor and ethane) was performed in 1795 by a Dutch chemist. In the middle of the 19th century, because C2H4 had a lower hydrogen than C2H5 ethyl, suffixes (ene) of Greek origin were added to the end of ethyl, and after that olefin gas is called ethylene gas.
The hormonal effects of ethylene on the general growth of plants were first observed in 1864, when gas leakage in street lighting systems led to stunted growth and deformation in nearby plants. In 1901, Niljubo identified the active component of gas, which was ethylene gas, but this was not known until 1934, when Johnny determined that plants could synthesize this gas, also in 1935, Crocker suggested that this gas can be used for the hormonal response to fruit ripening and aging of vegetative tissue.
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Applications of Ethylene
Ethylene is an important raw material for the production of many of the most widely used organic compounds in industry. Ethylene is widely used in the plastics industry. Ethylene polymerizes to produce polyethylene, which is a very important plastic.
Ethylene is widely used in the plastics industry. In fact, ethylene is one of the basic constituents of excellent materials or polymers in industry. Ethylene is abundant in oil and gas extracted from mines and is one of the downstream petrochemical products. Ethylene gas is used as a very important raw material in industry to produce many organic compounds and in the plastics industry to produce polyethylene, which is a very important plastic, by the method of ethylene polymerization. The use of ethylene to combine with benzene and the production of ethyl benzene, which is the main material of polyester, is also noteworthy.
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Ethylene production in the Middle East
A total of 22% of the world's ethylene is produced by Middle Eastern companies. Proximity to consumer markets in Asia, Europe, Africa and countries such as India and China is the main competitiveness of the petrochemical industry.
Iran currently has seven ethylene projects under implementation, which are expected to increase the country's ethylene production capacity by 2025 with the operation of these projects by nearly 6 million and 200 thousand tons. If this is achieved, Iran will have about 32% of the Middle East ethylene production capacity and 7% of the world's total ethylene production capacity.
Table 2 shows the ongoing plans of the country's ethylene and Figure 3 shows the outlook for Iran's share in the ethylene glycol trade in the Middle East and the world until 2025.
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