German chemical company BASF and The Linde Group’s Engineering Division are collaborating to serve natural gas processing applications using BASF’s absorbent technology and Linde’s adsorption and membrane technology.

With the combined capabilities of materials expertise from BASF and engineering expertise from Linde, the two companies are well positioned to expand their global leadership position in natural gas applications.

The collaboration is a strong signal to the natural gas industry and will open access to previously inaccessible gas compositions for treatment.

BASF’s innovative Durasorb™ adsorbents will be used to improve Linde’s high-performance membrane processes, which provide stability and selectivity advantages over competitive membrane processes.

Membrane technology that can process gas high in CO2 is becoming increasingly important in the natural gas industry, Linde explained in a statement. The ability to treat gas high in both heavy hydrocarbons and CO2 will allow BASF and Linde to serve a part of the industry that now must rely on high cost alternatives.

Customers will benefit from a one-stop solution. BASF and Linde will perform the required design work to ensure that the adsorbent is well suited to the membrane. Linde will supply both units to the customer required to process natural gas: the membrane unit and the pre-treatment unit located upstream, applying Durasorb™. This arrangement will simplify the technical and the procurement processes for the customer as well as increase the reliability and performance of the membrane process.

“The partnership leverages the strengths of both companies and expands the market reach of Durasorb™, allowing BASF to serve together with Linde an even greater portion of the fast-growing natural gas industry,” said Detlef Ruff, Senior Vice-President of Process Catalysts at BASF.

“We are enthusiastic to cooperate with BASF in this strategically important market. A proper and sophisticated pre-treatment of natural gas is key to deploy the full potential of high-performance membranes,“ added Tobias Keller, Executive Vice-President of Linde Engineering’s Product Line Adsorption and Membrane Plants.