Air Products has achieved mechanical completion of the world’s largest industrial gas complex in Jazan, Saudi Arabia.

The Tier One company completed the world-scale complex without a lost time injury in 25 million worker hours.

“For the Air Products team members involved to complete this project with the extensive worker hours required, facing varied challenges, and to do so without a lost time injury is a truly exceptional milestone,” said Dr Samir Serhan, Executive Vice-President at Air Products.

“It speaks of the dedication to safety, and extreme focus on the task to be completed. The confirmation of our success was the agreement of the customer that we had reached the mechanical completion stage of the construction project.”

“Going forward, when a prospective customer is interested in Air Products’ expertise, we can point to a map and say, let me tell you what we accomplished at Jazan,” Dr Serhan said.

In April 2015, Air Products was awarded a 20-year contract by Saudi Aramco, under a joint venture of Air Products and ACWA Holding to build, own and operate the world’s largest industrial gas complex to supply 75,000 metric tonnes per day to Saudi Aramco’s refinery and integrated gasification combined cycle being built in Jazan, Saudi Arabia. 

The Jazan Project was executed by Air Products’ major execution centre in the UK, US, China and India with active engagement of employees in Saudi Arabia. The industrial gas complex is expected to be brought onstream in phrases this year (2019).

“Overall it took approximately three years to engineer, procure and construct the world’s largest industrial gas facility. The project is significantly larger than anything executed by Air Products to date, and the global company engineering effort speaks to our engineering capabilities and expertise,” said Dr Serhan.

“On top of that, there was the massive recruitment effort to bring the construction workforce and others to the location, train them, and have them understand our focus on safety. The construction success and safety results all speak to the execution by our team.” Dr Serhan concluded.

Rob Cockerill - BW v1

This is a milestone achievement for Air Products and the gases industry as a whole.

Ever since its announcement in 2015, it’s felt like the Jazan project has been long awaited; the world’s largest industrial gas complex, 75,000 metric tonnes of gases to be delivered to Saudi Aramco every day once at full capacity. It’s a colossal project.

Perhaps even more impressive has been the journey to it over the last three years. While the industry has been a broad split of intrigued, cynical and all a flutter for the whirlwind mega-merger of Praxair and Linde over those three years, the team behind this mega project itself have been laser focused on delivering against their objectives - and in some style.

This is only mechanical completion and there will still be some way to go before the site is phased into operation, but as Air Products’ Executive Vice-President Dr. Samir Serhan was keen to point out, it took just three years to engineer, procure and construct what is comfortably the world’s largest industrial gas complex today. That’s an incredible feat.

To do so without a single lost time injury, spanning 25 million worker hours, makes it all the more impressive and further underlines the Zero Ambition that the gases industry rightly holds paramount. Nothing is more important.

Meanwhile, Air Products has continued to enhance its capabilities in gasification technologies in this same timeframe, relatively quietly going about its business in what looks set to be an enterprising area going forward.

Gasification technology is integrated into Saudi Aramco’s refinery complex, while Air Products has signed an agreement to acquire GE’s gasification business and has been actively tapping into the gasification and syngas potential in China of late, linked to the growing clean fuels movement.