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In The Essential Chemical Industry - Online, there are 76 units which describe key aspects of the chemical industry in a concise way. They are designed so that you can ‘dip in’ to them to retrieve the information you need.

Although the units are self-contained, you will find that throughout this web site there are cross-references to material in other units, which is easily obtained by the designated hyperlinks. There is also a facility which allows you to search the whole site. These two approaches will help you to follow up related topics and to explore more widely.

There is an overview of the chemical industry which looks at the industry in an international context.
The other 75 units are presented in five thematic groups:

  1. Industrial processes
  2. Materials and applications
  3. Basic chemicals
  4. Polymers
  5. Metals

In this section several of the processes covered are concerned with the manufacture of some of the fundamental basic chemicals, known as petrochemicals. These include units on distillation and the processes following the distillation of oil into fractions, for example cracking and reforming. Other units include a review of the role of catalysts in the chemical industry.

Overhanging everything that the modern chemical industry does is its effect on the environment, in terms of energy and material use and the waste it produces. Thus other units are devoted to recycling and Green chemistry.

In this section on processes, there are units on:

An invitation

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errors that you have found, suggestions for new topics or for adding to the existing units,
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Please send these comments to:
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This web site is produced by the Centre for Industry Education Collaboration, a non-profit organization and an integral part of the Department of Chemistry, University of York, UK. Copyright © 2016 University of York Centre for Industry Education Collaboration, York, UK. All Rights Reserved.