To meet industry demand, Air Liquide has decided to broaden its offer by proposing an alternative to existing cleaning gases for its customers, adding fluorine cleaning gas solutions to its offering.

The new option comes in addition to carrier and specialty gases and precursor materials used in the manufacturing process.

In recent years, demand from the electronics industry for cleaning gases for large flat panel display and silicon thin film photovoltaic manufacturing has grown significantly. It’s a widely held belief that fluorine will become an alternative to nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) as the more commonly used cleaning solution in this sector.

Starting in 2012, flat panel display and silicon thin film photovoltaic manufacturing sites will now have access to this environmentally-friendly gas from Air Liquide. It will be produced directly by large on-site facilities, offering a cost effective and reliable approach to cleaning applications that will also allow customers to benefit from productivity enhancement.

Air Liquide is joining forces with the Solvay Group in a worldwide joint venture to bring this offer to market, an undertaking that involves building, owning and operating the next generation of on-site fluorine solutions.

Establishment of the joint venture is subject to the approval of the appropriate antitrust authorities.

François Darchis, a member of Air Liquide’s Executive Committee, commented, “This new step will allow Air Liquide to expand its offer in this fast growing electronics market. Solvay brings its field-proven fluorine production technology and expertise.”

“By developing this non-greenhouse cleaning solution alternative for our customers, Air Liquide reiterates its commitment to environmental preservation. High-Tech solutions and the Environment are two of the Air Liquide Group’s growth drivers.”