Chemical industries have a major place in the world economy. The industrial revolution, which commenced in the 18 century, was also a materials revolution that started with the large-scale extraction of iron. This continues to the present day with the extraction of other metals, the production of bulk chemicals such as fertilisers, the oil and plastics industries, and the speciality chemicals industry producing medicines, enzymes, catalysts and additives. When teaching this option, emphasise chemical reactions and their relevant equations.
E.1 Initial Overview (2h)
Outline the abundance, occurrence and availability of sources of materials.
Identify the factors that influence the establishment of a chemical industry in a particular location. Include sources of suitable raw materials, energy supply, transport to and from the site, availability ofinvestment, skills and labour and existence of markets for the product.
Outline the division of the industry into both intermediates and consumer products.
State the increasing importance of biotechnology in chemical manufacture.
E.2 Principles of Extraction and Production of Metals (2h)
Outline the principles used in the physical separation of materials.
Discuss the chemical principles involved in the extraction of metals
from their ores.
E.3 Iron and Aluminium (4h)
State the main sources of iron.
Explain the reactions that occur in the blast furnace. Include the role of coke, limestone and the formation of slag. The relevant equations should be considered.
Explain the conversion of iron into steel using the basic oxygen converter.
Describe the properties and uses of steel as an alloy of iron.
Discuss the production of aluminium
by electrolysis of alumina in molten cryolite.
Describe the main properties and uses of aluminium.
Discuss the environmental impact of iron and aluminium production.
E.4 The Oil Industry (4h)
Outline the importance of oil as a source of chemical feedstock.
Outline the removal of sulphur from crude oil.
Describe the fractional
distillation of oil.
Describe cracking and its products.
Describe reforming processes and their products.
State the uses of refinery products as feedstock for the organic chemical
E.5 Polymers (3h)
Cross reference with 11.3
Describe how the properties
of polymers depend on their structural features.
Describe ways of modifying the properties of polymers.
Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of polymer use.
E.6 Silicon (1.5h)
Describe the extraction and purification of silicon.
Compare the electrical conductivity of a semiconductor with that of metals
Explain the doping of silicon to produce n-type and p-type semiconductors.
E.7 Ellingham Diagrams (1.5 h)
Analyse Ellingham diagrams to predict the feasibility of reducing metal
E.8 Mechanisms in the Organic Chemicals Industry (2h)
Compare and discuss the mechanisms of thermal and catalytic cracking.
Describe the mechanism involved in the manufacture of low-density polyethene.
Outline the use of Ziegler-Natta catalysts in the manufacture of high-density
E.9 The Chlor-alkali Industry (2h)
Discuss the production of chlorine by the electrolysis of sodium chloride.
Outline the importance of the products of this process.
Discuss the environmental impact of this process.