Thanks to the news today, every housewife knows how much a barrel of oil is worth. The media inspire us that the economic stability of Russia and the welfare of the country’s citizens directly depend on this. But what kind of unit of volume is this – a barrel, why did it get such a name, and how much is it exactly in liters we are used to? In addition, complexity is added by the fact that barrels are also different.
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What is a barrel?
The very word “barrel” in translation from English literally means “barrel.” Such a measure of the volume of oil appeared in America, Pennsylvania, in the second half of the XIX century. It was there that the first well appeared for the extraction of raw materials from which kerosene could be produced. Employed in the extraction of “black gold” workers whiskey was driven just in barrels. It was convenient to use this container for filling with the extracted raw materials. So the tanks got a second life. The first well produced 40 barrels of oil per day.
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How many liters are in one barrel?
Today is american an oil barrel is considered equal to 42 gallons or 158.988 liters. It is no coincidence that the word “oil” is used, because in the States other liquids are measured by another barrel, which is already 31.5 gallons (119.2 liters). But can beer be considered a regular “other” liquid? A foamy drink has its own barrel – a beer. It is equal to 31 gallons or 117.3 liters. This measure appeared due to tax regulations. In America, you can also find a dry barrel, of course, it is used to measure the volume of loose bodies. This measure corresponds to our 115.6 liters.
Loose bodies are measured in barrels in England, but there this measure is 163.66 liters. England has its own beer barrel, which has changed not only that throughout history, it also depended on the type of drink (beer or ale). But since 1900, the English barrel is the same, both for liquids and for loose bodies.
There is a “barrel” in France, her name is “barrique” (barrique). This measure is tied to wine gallons. Naturally, in Bordeaux had its own “barrel” (225 liters), and in Burgundy – its own (228 liters). Today, such a measure of volume is used only in Haiti.
And Russia also had its own “barrel”. It included 40 buckets, and its volume was almost 492 liters. Such a measure of volume was needed for trade with foreigners, whom the state prohibited the retail sale of wine. We had our own “barrels” for measuring beer, tar, gunpowder, etc.
But the classic American oil barrel, although it is the standard, is still involved in the confusion. The fact is that in some countries oil is sold not in barrels, but in tons. But with the transfer from one value to another, it’s not all simple – everything depends on the density of oil. So the regularly mentioned barrel is a measure with its history and with a bunch of brothers.