Airgas, an Air Liquide company and a US supplier of industrial gases, welding technologies, and safety products, celebrated the grand opening of its new air separation unit (ASU) and co-located hydrogen (H2) plant in Calvert City, Kentucky on the 23rd May, with a ribbon cutting ceremony and guided tours of the facility.

The new ASU produces liquid oxygen (O2), nitrogen (N2) and argon (Ar), and the liquid H2 for a wide range of customer applications. The ASU supplies tonnage oxygen and N2 via pipeline to Westlake Chemical at its Calvert City manufacturing plant, and also supports the region’s merchant bulk gas market. The new facility enhances the company’s gas supply chain, ensuring long-term reliability of supply for its merchant gas customers.

President and CEO of Westlake Chemical, Albert Chao, joined Airgas and Air Liquide associates, including Michael Graff, Chairman and CEO of American Air Liquide Holdings, Inc. and Chairman of Airgas; Pascal Vinet, CEO of Airgas; Tom Thoman, Senior Vice-President of Merchant Gases; state and local dignitaries; and customers to celebrate the new facility.

Vinet commented, “Airgas is proud to partner with Westlake Chemical and join the Calvert City community with this new air separation unit and neighboring liquid H2 facility. With these additions, we have greater ability to increase our capacity, allowing us to better serve our customers throughout the region, while simultaneously investing in the local economy and long-term growth opportunities in Calvert City and the surrounding area. We look forward to establishing successful partnerships with the local residents, businesses and civic associations in the area for many years to come.”

The state-of-the-art ASU is managed by Airgas’ Merchant Gases division, which overseas Airgas’ network of ASUs, procurement and supplier relationships, and the logistics and distribution of bulk atmospheric and other gases. Following the acquisition of Airgas by Air Liquide in May 2016, Airgas is now leading US supplier of industrial, speciality, and medical gases and provides bulk gas suppliers of O2, N2 and Ar through its 29 air separation units nationwide.

Airgas ribbon cutting

Airgas ribbon cutting: Michael Graff (Chairman and CEO of American Air Liquide Holdings, Inc. and Chairman of Airgas); Albert Chao (President and CEO of Westlake Chemical); and Tom Thoman (Airgas Senior Vice President of Merchant Gases) are joined by executives from Air Liquide, Airgas and Westlake Chemical to cut the ceremonial ribbon.