Ceramic Industry News

Air Products Announces Investments in Europe (posted 10/17/08)

Air Products plans to capitalize on its recent investment in Eastern Europe with several developments in the region. The company has signed a contract with Alcoa to supply nitrogen to Alcoa’s aluminum plant in Samara, Russia. As part of the agreement, Air Products will install two high-purity nitrogen generators and will take over the existing generator on the site. The new generators will be on-stream in 2009. Russia is an important growth market for Air Products, where the company is involved in projects in the Moscow region and now in the Samara region.

Air Products is further strengthening its position in the Polish market with the announcement that it will build a state-of-the-art cylinder filling depot in Warsaw. The construction is due to start in 2009, and the depot is due to be operational in 2010. The depot will use the latest technology to fill over 3000 cylinders per day at a pressure of 200 bar, which is the standard cylinder pressure currently used in Poland. A 200 bar cylinder holds a greater quantity of gas than 150 bar cylinders, which translates into cost reduction for the users since less frequent fillings are needed.

The depot will be equipped to fill cylinders with all types of medical and technical gases, including argon, nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide and mixtures, and Linx™ welding gases, as well as modified atmospheric packaging (MAP) gases for the food industry. This is the second technical gas filling depot to be built by Air Products in Poland, following the opening of the depot in Kędzierzyn-Koźle in 2005.

In Slovakia, Air Products’ new high-purity hydrogen plant in Novaky is now on-stream. The plant will bring on additional hydrogen capacity to customers in Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary. It complements the company’s existing facility in Litvinov, Czech Republic, and will support key industries such as glass, metals and food.

“Central and Eastern Europe is a key region for us, as it is showing an impressive growth rate,” said Erwin Zwicky, president of Air Products Europe. “The investments we are making show our determination to build on the successful acquisition of BOC Gazy we made in 2007, which positions us as the number-one industrial gas provider in Poland. Our presence in Central Europe is growing, and we now operate two hydrogen plants in the region-in Litvinov, Czech Republic, and Novaky, Slovakia-allowing us to serve customers across the entire region.”

For more information, visit www.airproducts.com.


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