Burckhardt Compression has established itself as a major player in the compressor technology world. Providing a range of applications for gas gathering and processing, and gas transport and storage, the Swiss company has also provided solutions for the burgeoning hydrogen mobility and green energy sector.
The past 12 months has seen some major highlights for the company including a partnership that has seen the company focus on developing a heavy-duty hydrogen refuelling station compressor system.
Discussing these technologies and more, Patrick Stähli, Global Sales Director H2 for Mobility & Energy (HME) of the Systems Division at Burckhardt Compression spoke to gasworld for an exclusive 12 Days of Content Q&A.
gasworld (GW): Could you please begin by telling us more about Burckhardt Compression and its role in the global industrial gases sector?
Patrick Stähli (PS): Burckhardt Compression is the worldwide market leader for reciprocating compressor systems and the only manufacturer and service provider that covers a full range of reciprocating compressor technologies and services. Its customized compressor systems are used in the upstream oil & gas, gas transport and storage, refinery, chemical, petrochemical, and industrial gas sectors.
In the global industrial gases segment, Burckhardt Compression has played a pioneer role in the compression of Ammonia, Oxygen or Helium in the 20th century. Today, hydrogen for mobility and energy is developing fast, with very specific requirements, and we want to contribute by playing a leading role with our reliable compressors and wide range of suitable compression solutions and services.
GW: What’s been the most exciting application or growth driver for the company this year?
PS: For sure it was the impressive growth of the Hydrogen Mobility and Energy business and related applications. There are several drivers responsible for this growth. As a main driver, the innovation in our sealing technology for process gas compressors, the broad product portfolio for various hydrogen applications, as well as the development on the high-pressure non-lube reciprocating compressors needs to be highlighted. In addition to the technical aspects, services are and will be of central importance. Burckhardt Compression is already well positioned, but we also know that we need to continue to innovate and develop our services to keep pace with the market and contribute to its maturation.
GW: What are three highlights for the company in 2021?
PS: There are many highlights for Burckhardt Compression. In the hydrogen mobility and energy market we see three outstanding highlights:
1. We have been selected to deliver process gas compressors for the largest H2 liquefaction plant in South Korea.
2. We entered a partnership with Shell New Energies to develop a heavy-duty hydrogen refuelling station compressor system. We will develop new innovative technologies to compress larger volumes of hydrogen up to 900 bar, using a non-lubricated design. For Burckhardt Compression as well as for the whole market, these are very exciting times.
3. Burckhardt Compression was able to build up, respectively further strengthen, the relationships to various customers and hydrogen market stakeholders. Further strengthening these partnerships will be key to achieve the ambitious goal of a global energy transition.
GW: Is there anything you’re looking forward to in the industrial gas sector for 2022?
PS: Yes, especially the Hydrogen Mobility and Energy sector will continue to grow. We will see more large hydrogen production projects moving into execution and into operation. Still, some of those will be pilot plants to gain further experience and know-how. Furthermore, we do expect a more innovative approach into larger hydrogen fuelling applications for various vehicles. This is very exciting since new or adapted technologies will be needed to meet these new requirements.
GW: The company is set to start its new CEO, how exciting is this for the company?
PS: A new CEO for a company is always exciting. With Fabrice Billard, who is already in the company for some years, we can look forward for further growth and continuous strengthening of the position of Burckhardt Compression as market leader. Regarding the Hydrogen Mobility and Energy business, we do expect further push and tailwind, as the new CEO is already one of the main drivers and sponsors of our presence in this market.
GW: In the spirit of the time of year and theme of the series, if you could make one Christmas wish for the industrial gases industry, what would it be and why?
PS: Yes, of course, to keep the good momentum in favour of the energy transition and that the Hydrogen Mobility and Energy market will sustainably grow and keep its innovation drive.