The course provides students with a basic scientific and technical understanding of the production, behaviour and handling of hydrocarbon fuels and lubricants, so enabling them to contribute effectively in technically demanding appointments in the field of petroleum chemistry and technology.


Read more Read less

The course covers both conventional petroleum-based fuels and alternative fuels derived from synthetic or biological materials.

At a glance

  • Dates
    • Please enquire for course dates
  • Duration10 weeks
  • LocationCranfield University at Shrivenham
  • Cost£14000. A limited number of MOD sponsored places are available.

Course structure

The course is delivered by a mix of lectures, tutorials, laboratory classes, directed reading, information searches and site visits. Students are assessed by a combination of an oral presentation, individual coursework and written examinations.

What you will learn

The main focus of Petroleum Chemistry and Technology is provision of the academic content for a 31 week course for officers from the Armed Forces involved in fuels and lubricants logistics. However, this module is equally suitable for civilians involved in the procurement, management, specification, supply or distribution of hydrocarbon fuels and lubricants.

The course provides students with a basic scientific and technical understanding of the production, behaviour and handling of hydrocarbon fuels and lubricants, so enabling them to contribute effectively in technically demanding appointments in the field. The course covers both conventional petroleum-based fuels, and alternative fuels which have been synthesised or derived from biological materials. Fuel handling topics such as the fluid mechanics of pump-pipeline systems, electrical safety and environmental pollution from hydrocarbons are introduced.

On successful completion, a student will be able to describe the chemistry that underpins hydrocarbon fuel technology, will understand the refining processes used to produce fuels and lubricants and will know how differences in chemical composition affect properties of fuels and their usage in different types of engine. The student will also be able to explain the principles of friction and wear, select lubricants appropriate to an application and understand the significance of the properties detailed in fuel and lubricant specifications. The student will be conversant with the principles of pumping, flow and handling of fuels, and application of these principles to the design and construction of fuels installations, including making safe decisions on the use of electrical equipment and installations in the petroleum field.

The course provides an excellent introduction to the subject for those in the petroleum industry or those involved in fuels and lubricants supply and distribution.

Core content

The course is delivered by a mix of lectures, tutorials, laboratory classes, directed reading, information searches and site visits.  The key teaching areas are:

  • Fuels and lubricants
  • Applied chemistry
  • Hydraulics
  • Electrical safety
  • Foundation maths

The subjects covered include:

  • Crude oil and refining
  • Gasoline and alternative fuels for spark ignition engines
  • Diesel and alternative fuels for compression ignition engines
  • Aviation fuels: present and future
  • Formulation of lubricants
  • Lubrication and wear, with importance attached to the physical and chemical properties of lubricants
  • Applied chemistry, with particular reference to fuels and lubricants technology
  • Theory of hydraulics, as applied to fuels in pump-pipeline systems
  • Fundamentals of electricity with emphasis on electrical safety in petroleum installations
  • Foundation maths

Who should attend

This is a nine week intensive course providing an excellent introduction to the subject for those involved in the procurement, management, specification, supply or distribution of hydrocarbon fuels and lubricants.

How to apply

To apply for this course please use the online application form.

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.