Italian firm, SICO SpA (Società Italiana Carburo Ossigeno) has announced plans to increase liquid oxygen, nitrogen and argon production through a new 300tpd ASU.

Due to increasing demands for oxygen, nitrogen and argon, Varese based SICO will introduce the addition of the 300 tpd ASU to their facility in Cesano Maderno, Milan.

At the same time a new hydrogen plant located in Cesano Maderno, Milan will enter in production, with a capacity of 2 million cubic metres per year.

Both facilities will be on-stream at the end of the year.

According to the company this is first nitrogen plant for Sico. In the future the company hopes the production increase of oxygen and argon will help with the large market demand.

SICO estimate to invest €20m and €3m into the 300tpd ASU and the hydrogen facility respectively.

The company's goal is to take 5 per cent of italian industrial gas market in 2008. Claudio Grigato said:"Our goal is to take 5 per cent of the italian industrial gas market within 2008 so that when we start to go abroad we will know how difficult it is for a family company like SICO to work in this market."