It most likely does take more energy to produce gasoline of higher octanes, because in addtion to the fractional distillation required to separate oil into gasoline, other chemical processes must be used to get gasoline to a higher octane level. These processes include cracking long chains of hydrocarbons to produce smaller hydrocarbons, combining smaller chains of hydrocarbons to produce larger ones, and rearranging the molecular structures of certain hydrocarbons. Gasoline that is produced directly from fractional distillation only has an octane of 70, and by adding other hydrocarbons produced through these processes, the octane rating can be increased to around 90.
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