The South African gases business has seen a new addition to its ranks of late, with the recent establishment of Gauteng-based Cryogas Express (Pty) Ltd.

For those businesses dependent on either vital supplies of cryogenic industrial gas for day-to-day production, or uninterrupted supply service to customers, enter Cryogas Express.

The company is able to provide solutions to many challenging situations, in a region which often struggles with inherent obstacles to its gases business. For example, where the flow of production has been interrupted or threatened because the contracted supplier had no available tanker to deliver gas when needed.

Until now there was no easy solution to problems like this. Through the inception of Cryogas Express however, such challenges are no longer a major stumbling block.

Safety in transit
Cryogenic gases are classified as ‘Dangerous goods’ for very valid reasons and require specialised handling equipment.

Firstly, the temperature of atmospheric gases in bulk liquid form is so low that many conventional engineering materials would become dangerously brittle. Secondly, they are either asphyxiant or oxidising gases that in liquid form are very highly concentrated.

Finally, cryogenic gases expand to several hundred times their volume when vaporised and have the potential to exert dangerously high pressure, unless contained in appropriate storage units.

Expensive, purpose designed, double walled, vacuum insulated pressure vessels are required, just to keep the liquid temperature below boiling point of between -180-200 degrees centigrade. The need for optimum transport efficiency and safety in transit, demands that these cryogenic tankers are carried on low mass trailers, equipped with modern air suspension and anti-lock braking systems.

Such specialised vehicles have simply not been available for hire in South Africa, because of the significant capital investment they represent. This risk can now be mitigated by new company Cryogas Express, the first company in Southern Africa to offer an outsourced cryogenic delivery service solution to the gases industry.

Filling the gap
Based in Edenvale, Gauteng, the joint venture company merges the resources and more than 22 years of rapid transport expertise of Triton Express (Pty) Ltd, with over 25 years of gas industry and supply-chain experience of MD Graham Hunter.

Filling the critical service gap, Cryogas has made the strategic initial investment to provide reliable, fast, point-to-point delivery of liquid argon, liquid oxygen and liquid nitrogen and is committed to further investment - to ensure that gas-dependant industries will enjoy continuous supplies.

The new company notes that industrial gas manufacturers need no longer risk breakdowns or other service difficulties, by continuing to deploy old and unreliable delivery vehicles during periods of peak demand.

Furthermore, customers that operate air separation plants to provide gases for internal consumption now have access to effective transport between remotely located plants.

Customers operating in South Africa’s neighbouring countries including Mozambique, Angola, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe are also included in Cryogas’ route plans.