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Author Topic: Where does all the petrol vapour go?  (Read 4704 times)

Offline John Chapman

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Where does all the petrol vapour go?
« on: 22/03/2009 12:58:55 »
The water cycle is well known. Water evaporates into the atmosphere, condenses into fine droplets, precipitates as rain and then evaporates again. But what about petrol (gasoline)?

There must be huge amounts of petrol vapour evaporating all over the place. Where does it all go? Why donít we have petrol clouds? Just imagine the effect of lightning in a petrol cloud!

And what about alcohol vapour? Why arenít the fish permanently in party mode because of all the alcohol raining into the rivers? And why doesnít the alcohol preferentially evaporate to produce more alcohol clouds. And so onÖ
 


 

paul.fr

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Where does all the petrol vapour go?
« Reply #1 on: 22/03/2009 14:04:55 »
Why donít we have petrol clouds?

You sort of do, acid rain.
 

Offline John Chapman

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Where does all the petrol vapour go?
« Reply #2 on: 22/03/2009 14:16:52 »
Aah, that's not the same thing. As far as I know (and I could well be wrong) the clouds themselves aren't acidic but the rain picks up carbon particulates on the way down which dissolve in the raindrops and produce weak carbonic acid.

But all this petrol vapour in the air must be going somewhere. It strikes me there can are only two possibilities: either there is some other mechanism removing it or it accumulates to the degree that it must eventually condense into petrol clouds. Since patently we don't have petrol clouds, where is the petrol vapour going?
 
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Where does all the petrol vapour go?
« Reply #3 on: 22/03/2009 15:28:39 »
The effect of sunlight and oxygen on most organic compounds means that they get destroyed or converted to something soluble in water ans washed out by the rain.
 

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Where does all the petrol vapour go?
« Reply #3 on: 22/03/2009 15:28:39 »

 

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