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Naftalan

Naftalan
Naftalan is a sahar (city) in Azerbaijan, surrounded by the rayon of Goranboy. It is on an agricultural plain near the Lesser Caucasus Mountains. The word naftalan also means a petroleum product which can be obtained there. The word Naftalan, can be traced to the Greek word "naphtha" ("νάφθα"), meaning pertaining to oil, and the Azerbaijani suffix "-alan", which is of the verb "to take" (and literally meaning "oil buyer"). It is the center of a unique petroleum industry, with a grade of oil referred to as "Naftalan". While Naftalan crude oil is too heavy for normal export uses (unlike Azerbaijan's plentiful Caspian Sea oil), it contains about 50 percent naphthalene, a hydrocarbon that is the active ingredient in coal tar soaps, which are used to treat psoriasis. As such, it is only used for medicinal purposes. People using the oil generally sit in a bath and are covered in oil up to their necks (see petroleum spas below).

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