Air Liquide has secured a long-term agreement in Australia with Nyrstar, an integrated mining and metals company. The €60m investment will fund a new state-of-the-art air separation unit (ASU) as part of Nyrstar’s Redevelopment Project at its Port Pirie site.

This project is designed to convert Nyrstar’s smelter into an advanced polymetallic recovery and recycling facility, in order to reduce the environmental footprint of the site and to enhance both efficiency and production capabilities.

Nyrstar’s site at Port Pirie (230km north of Adelaide) has been a customer of Air Liquide Australia since 1997. Under the newly expanded partnership and to support Nyrstar’s ambition of bringing world-class industry to the South Australia region, Air Liquide will supply oxygen and nitrogen to the new industrial process for Nyrstar’s advanced polymetallic recovery and recycling facility.

The new ASU, for which the investment decision was taken end of 2014, will have a total capacity of 1,400 tonnes per day. Designed and built by Air Liquide Engineering and Construction teams using leading technologies to offer energy efficiency as well as optimal performance and safety, it is scheduled to start operation in mid-2016.

François Venet, Vice-President, Asia Pacific and a member of Air Liquide group’s Executive Committee, commented, “We thank Nyrstar for its renewed trust in Air Liquide and for the long-term partnership we have been building together. With this investment, Air Liquide is reinforcing its presence in Australia by expanding the group’s offer to Large Industry customers, and affirming the value and competitiveness of our solutions. We are also proud that this project both contributes to reducing the environmental footprint while strengthening the industrial foundation of South Australia.”