Propane Gas – What and Hows.

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We all are familiar with gases that are available in the atmosphere. It is a natural gas that can be found in combustion with other hydrocarbons. Here we are going to talk about Propane Gas.

What is Propane Gas?

It is one of the gases that can fit into the definition of LPG – Liquefied Petroleum Gas. Propane is a flammable hydrocarbon gas that is liquefied under pressure. Also, is commonly used in heating, cooking, hot water, and vehicles.

Propane is also used for refrigerants, petrochemical feedstock, and aerosol propellants.

It can be compressed in a liquid state at relatively low pressure. Propane is usually stored as a liquid in steel vessels or containers ranging from small BBQ gas bottles to larger gas cylinders and LPG Storage tanks.

LPG Storage gas tanks

Propane is obtained from the processing of natural gas refining of petroleum. There are other gases that fall under the LPG category they are: butane (n-butane) and isobutene (i-butane). The mixtures of these gases are also referred to as NGL – natural gas liquids.

Let us see what the physical properties of Propane are.



Chemical Formula C3H8
Boiling temperature -42o Celsius / -43.6o Fahrenheit
Kg per L 0.51
L per kg 1.96
Relative Density: Air 1.53
Relative Density: H2O 0.51
Gas Volume: m3/kg 0.540
Expansion: 3/L 0.270
Energy Content: MJ/m3 95.8
Energy Content: MJ/kg 49.58
Energy Content: MJ/L 25.3
Pressure @21oC: kPa 858.7
Flame Temperature 1967oC / 3572.6oF
Specific Gravity @25oC 1.55
Density @ 15oC : kg/m3 1.899
Note that some numbers have been rounded

What are the Purposes of Propane?

Propane is usually used in homes, businesses, industrial, and agriculture, primarily for space heating, water heating, and cooking. One can find propane typically used in a rural area that does not have intertwining natural gas.

Appliances that use Propane gases include space heaters, furnaces, water heaters, cooktops, ovens, clothes dryers, and pool heaters.

Propane is also used as fuel in internal combustion for engine applications. These applications include cars, forklifts, buses, irrigation pumps. It is also used as vehicular fuel known as Autogas.

Propane gas is also used by agriculture and business for all sorts of applications. Being used as a fuel, propane is a co-product of crude oil refining and natural gas processing.

Okay, but where does Propane gas come from?

We all know it is an amazing transportable gas which is available in bottles – but what exactly is propane? Where does it come from? And How does it work?

Propane comes from natural gas wells and oil wells.

It is a fossil fuel that does not occur in isolation. Propane is naturally found in combinations with other hydrocarbons. It comes from the processing of natural gas and from the refinery processes of crude oil. Propane gas is isolated, liquefied under pressure, and then stored in pressure vessels for easy storage, shipping, and distribution.

Now that we know the What and Where of propane gas, let us know How is propane made?

It is made during natural gas processing and oil refining; it is separated from natural gas using the refrigeration process.

Propane is also extracted from heated crude oil using a distillation tower. It is then pressurized and stored as a liquid in cylinders and tanks.

What is Propane gas known as in other places?

Propane has many names just like we do. It is called LPG, LPG Gas, LP Gas, BBQ Gas or Autogas.

It is known only as Propane in the USA.

In the UK it is either called Propane or LPG.

Finally, let’s see the structure of Propane.


propane gas structure

That’s all for now guys. In the next blog, we’ll talk about the common uses of propane, some important facts, is propane combustible? and what can you do to be safe from the fire?

Have a great day ahead readers.