Praxair, Inc. has today announced the start-up of a new packaged gas fill plant in Bismarck, North Dakota, significantly increasing its cylinder gases capacity in the Bakken shale oil formation region.

The news comes in the same week that Praxair confirmed start-up of its new 600 tons per day air separation unit in Memphis, Tennessee.

The new packaged gas fill plant in North Dakota comes at an interesting time for industrial gas demand in the US Midwest, with the shale oil ad gas revolution increasing consumption of merchant liquid nitrogen, for example; fellow gases company MATHESON has been positioning itself to cater for such demand in the region and recently completed construction of a new ASU in Dickinson, North Dakota.

The Bakken shale oil formation is located in Western North Dakota and Eastern Montana, as well as the Canadian provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. According to the US Energy Information Administration, estimated crude oil production in the Bakken region of North Dakota and Montana shows total wellhead output of over one million barrels of oil per day – which would rank North Dakota second only to Texas in oil production.

Praxair’s new automated fill facility has been designed to quickly and efficiently fill packaged gases, from single cylinders and packs to liquid vessels and tube trailers. The facility offers a variety of industrial and specialty gases, including oxygen, nitrogen, argon and carbon dioxide, as well as ultra high purity gases and blends, further serving oil and gas and oilfield services companies operating in the region.

“Our plant, designed by Praxair to specifically serve customers in this region, has reduced turnaround times and improved our efficiency, nearly doubling our previous fill capabilities,” said Robert Crew, General Manager, Praxair.

“This facility, together with our branch locations, helps us more effectively serve the growing needs of regional businesses.”

The plant complements Praxair’s network of branch locations providing safety and welding-related supplies, consumables and equipment.