Air Products (NYSE:APD) and Huntsman (NYSE:HUN) jointly gathered today for a groundbreaking ceremony held at the site of what will be Air Products’ new steam methane reformer (SMR) and cold box in Geismar, Louisiana. Air Products will build, own and operate the facility under a long-term agreement and industrial gases including carbon monoxide(CO), hydrogen and steam will be produced and supplied to Huntsman’s neighboring Geismar operations. The new facility is to be commercially onstream in early 2020.
“It is always exciting to break ground for a new world-scale facility, and especially to do so at a location where it will primarily serve a long-standing customer. We have supplied Huntsman with industrial gases at other facilities where they have operations and we are pleased to expand our relationship through this new supply supporting Huntsman at Geismar. The Air Products plant will be state-of-the-art in terms of high reliability and sustainability, with enhanced energy efficiency and reduced emissions,” said Corning Painter, executive vice president – Industrial Gases at Air Products.
Tony Hankins, president of Huntsman Polyurethanes said, “The reliability and environmental performance of the new industrial gases plant from Air Products will be an important foundation in supporting the delivery of our North American Polyurethanes strategy. As a business, we are focused on rapidly building our downstream footprint and capabilities. This strategic shift can only be achieved with a strong upstream asset position at our Geismar MDI facility. We look forward to the successful commissioning of the Air Products plant in early 2020.”
The new facility, to be located on land leased from Huntsman, will produce approximately 6.5 million standard cubic feet per day (MMSCFD) of CO, 50 MMSCFD of hydrogen, and up to 50,000 pounds per hour of steam. There is also the ability for the facility to be expanded to increase CO in the future to support additional growth.
Beyond supply to Huntsman’s production facility in Geismar, Air Products’ new plant will also be connected to its Gulf Coast hydrogen pipeline and network system (GCP). Dedicated in 2012, the 600-mile pipeline span is the world’s largest hydrogen plant and pipeline network system. The GCP stretches from the Houston Ship Channel in Texas to New Orleans, Louisiana, and supplies customers with over 1.4 billion feet of hydrogen per day from 22 hydrogen production facilities.
“We recently announced increased hydrogen capacity to the Gulf Coast pipeline for customers with an onstream project in Texas, and now we will again have added enhanced and reliable hydrogen supply to the pipeline network when this Geismar facility is placed onstream. We continually seek additional sources of hydrogen to add product supply capacity to our customers along our well-established pipeline network system along the Gulf Coast,” said Painter.