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the-ever-changing-rare-gas-market
the-ever-changing-rare-gas-market

The ever-changing rare gas market

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As we head in to 2018, we look back on a very interesting changing market for krypton (Kr), xenon (Xe) and neon (Ne) in 2017. Ne supply this year continued to increase as new plants came on-stream while the demand was growing slowly after the big decline of 2016.

There are still plants in Russia and Ukraine which are blowing off to atmosphere neon/helium crude as they have no customers for their crude or purified product. As you may expect, the price did decline some in 2017. For Kr we saw continued decline in price with some increase in demand, but also an increase in supply; as the Xe demand increases, Xe expansion and optimization also increases Kr production. About 90% of all Xe production is from crude Kr and Xe gas (normally 91% Kr to 8% Xe).

Xe is the gas of most interest today and beyond. The supply of Xe has increased some in 2017, but the demand has increased at a faster rate, so we saw prices increasing quickly – but not to the extent of 2014, the last big shortage of Xe.

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