The Linde Group has announced it has officially started operations at a second hydrogen liquefaction plant and a new air separation plant at its chemical site in Germany, with total investment in the expansion amounting to around €60m.

The new liquefier, which has the capacity to produce up to 3,000 litres of liquid hydrogen (LH2) per hour, is supplied with feed gas via a pipeline from the neighbouring hydrogen production plant. The hydrogen is liquefied at a temperature of -253°c and is loaded into LH2 container vehicles at special filling stations for transportation to customers.

Dr. Aldo Belloni, member of the Executive Board of Linde AG, commented, “With these new facilities we can offer our customers greater supply capacity, a broader product portfolio and even greater product purity. As hydrogen is becoming increasingly used as a fuel for road traffic vehicles, the hydrogen liquefier is a valuable investment in the future.”

Cryogenic LH2 has a much higher storage density than gaseous hydrogen, making this much more efficient in the fields of transportation and logistics. Germany’s only other hydrogen liquefier until now is in Ingolstadt and also run by Linde, with the company aiming to satisfy the fuel demand of hydrogen-powered vehicles with sustainable production methods in the future.

The new air separation plant at the Leuna site has a capacity of 33,000 cubic meters of oxygen per hour and most of the oxygen is fed into the local pipeline network and supplying the on-site refinery. Argon and smaller quantities of other noble gases are also produced.