The Linde Group has officially established itself as owning the largest nitrogen plant in the world after signing an 11-year contract to supply nitrogen to petroleum company PEMEX.

The industrial gas giant has signed a contract with PEMEX Exploración y Producción (PEP), a subsidiary of Petroleós Mexicanos (PEMEX), to extend its supply of high-pressure, high-purity nitrogen to PEMEX’s oil reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico.

The local Linde affiliate in Mexico, Compañia de Nitrógeno de Cantarell, SA de CV (CNC), is now supplying a total of 1,500m cubic feet of nitrogen (N₂) per day from its facility in the State of Campeche.

The contract between the two companies spans through to 2027. PEMEX aim to recover 800m barrels of oil during the next 11 years using the enhanced oil recovery (EOR) process.

ASU the linde group

ASU the linde group

Source: the linde group

ASU the linde group

Tom Blades, member of the Executive Board of Linde AG, said, “We are proud to be a trusted business partner of PEMEX in one of the world’s largest EOR projects,” and Pat Murphy, President of Linde Americas, confirmed, “Our facility is now the largest nitrogen plant in the world. We’ve continually upgraded our facilities and added new capacity to keep up with PEP’s oil production demands.”

The nitrogen at the Linde plant is produced in five separate air separation units (ASU’s), using atmospheric air as input to an ultra-low temperature cryogenic process that separates the pure nitrogen from oxygen and other minor components. The nitrogen is subsequently pressurised for delivery via steel pipelines over 60 miles to the PEMEX off-shore fields.