Air Products has launched a brand new business entity to support customer-owned captive hydrogen (H2) plants in a response to a spike in demand for this kind of service.

The US-based corporation is the world’s leading supplier of H2 and owns and operates over 100 plants across the globe. It produces approximately three billion standard cubic feet per day of H2.

The new Hydrogen Services Business will form part of the Tier One company’s Customer Plant Support organisation and aims to help customers improve the reliability and productivity of individual, onsite H2 plants.

The business unit will help and support customers with a variety of queries, including H2 production from steam methane reformers (SMR), planning SMR turnarounds, solving mechanical integrity issues, pressure swing adsorber (PSA) revamps, as well as ways to help improve general plant energy efficiency.

Kevin Michaelis, Vice-President, Products and Technology – Industrial Gases at Air Products, explained, “Air Products has been reactively providing service on customer-owned H2 plants for more than 30 years. We have seen such market pull that we are proactively packaging our technical knowledge and experience into an offering that can help customers run their H2 plants more effectively, as well as solve operational issues.”

We have seen such market pull that we are proactively packaging our technical knowledge and experience into an offering that can help customers run their H2 plants more effectively

Kevin Michaelis, Vice-President, Products and Technology – Industrial Gases at Air Products

Scott Siegmund, Global Manager, Customer Plant Support at the corporation, signified, “Whether our customers need know-how, elbow grease or both, engaging Air Products’ Hydrogen Services Business allows them to focus on their area of expertise while we focus on ours – operational expertise in H2 production.”

As the leading producer of H2, Air Products has already carried out detailed plant assessments, performance tests, cost-effective expansion schemes and turndown operations under the Hydrogen Services Business brand for customers across the US, Southeast Asia and Europe.

These customers, although unnamed, reported a variety of positive changes following help from the new Air Products division, including increased production capacity and plant efficiency, by 20% and 10% respectively, added feedstock conversions from butane to natural gas, and plant expansion schemes with quick turnaround times.

Air products convent la industrial gas plant hydrogen

Source: Image courtesy of Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.

A plant operator works in the reformer area at Air Products’ industrial gas facility at Convent, La.