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2023-purityplus-annual-meeting-continues-in-san-antonio
2023-purityplus-annual-meeting-continues-in-san-antonio

2023 PurityPlus Annual Meeting continues in San Antonio

Independent Welding Distributors Cooperative (IWDC) members today continued with discussion and debate at the 2023 Purity Plus Annual Meeting. In the morning, attendees heard from Air Products, the Compressed Gas Association (CGA), and many others on the second day here in San Antonio, Texas.

A CO2 industry update from Jeff Bombich of Air Products kicked things off, with a focus on what companies can do to meet growing demands in this essential marketplace and avoid any critical shortages that have challenged the market in past years.

“Demand for CO2 expands at a much faster rate than capacity, due to feedgas availability and proximity,” he explained. “But the primary end markets are essential, meaning growth in the industry is needed to support these demanding end-users.”

“As we move forward and this growth continues, we need to continue to look at new opportunities to produce CO2.”

And what may these opportunities look like? Bombich listed four potential ways:

  1. Biogas collection and upgrading
  2. Landfill gas
  3. Anaerobic digestion of animal water
  4. Carbon capture from industrial processes

Of course, these alternative CO2 production methods come with points for consideration, and these range from resources to sustainability. Focused on the sustainability aspect, Bombich said, “Sustainability and environmental initiatives are something that we’re going to have to continue to track.”

And when it comes to the distributors role in supporting the future CO2 market, Bombich describesd this as “critical”.

“The role of the distributors in the market is critical. Finding and developing new applications from the ground up, starting with packaged gas and small bulk supply will help justify new investment in production capacity.”

The time for hydrogen

It’s no secret that hydrogen is a big talking point within the industry right now, but what are the advantages of hydrogen fuel cells and how do they support everyday applications in a sustainable manner?

The topic was discussed by Josh Weinmann, President of DeLille Oxygen, who told PurityPlus attendees that, when it comes to cars in particular, “it’s a race between the fuel cell and battery”.

Weinmann outlined the advantages a fuel cell offers to end-user markets. “A fuel cell is zero emissions to operate, zero emissions to dispose of and don’t have the long refuelling time of a battery.”

He also noted some queries that may be holding hydrogen fuel cells reaching their full potential. The lack of hydrogen refuelling infrastructure for vehicles and the upfront costs of a fuel cell and some misconceptions surrounding hydrogen as a whole were all mentioned.

Safety

The topic of safety was explored again during the morning’s sessions, with Jerry Sameth, Technical Manager of the Compressed Gases Association, telling attendees that “safety begins with standards.”

For 110 years, the CGA has offered safety information to support the industrial gases market. Today, however, Sameth has a strict focus on specialty gases and the CGA’s role in the marketplace.

“Historically, the term specialty gases was first coined by the CGA in the early 1960s,” he explained.

To support with safety needs in specialty gases , Sameth showcased some of the documents the CGA offers to best support those in the specialty gas space.

From technology to transportation

PurityPlus members also heard from Computers Unlimited, TCI Freight and CryoVation for an insight on current projects and the demands that are keeping business busy right now.

Tomorrow marks the final day of the event, with sessions begin again tomorrow at 8:00am (CST).

gasworld will continue with its coverage of the 2023 Annual PurityPlus Meeting tomorrow. In addition to daily recaps on the gasworld.com website, we will also dive deeper into the event’s take home content in the March issue of gasworld US.


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