LEHIGH VALLEY, Pa., June 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Air Products (NYSE: APD) and Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc. (MATHESON), a member of the Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation (TNSC) group, today announced that production operations have begun with the filling and shipping of the first two 11,000 gallon helium ISO containers from their jointly-owned liquid helium production plant near Big Piney, Wyoming. The plant is designed to produce 200 million standard cubic feet of helium per year initially, with expectations for future expansion to 400 million standard cubic feet per year.
The Big Piney helium facility purifies and liquefies a helium feedgas stream that is supplied by Denbury Resources' Riley Ridge gas processing plant. The Denbury plant processes a raw gas stream produced from the LaBarge Field in Wyoming, one of the largest helium-rich gas fields in the United States. The LaBarge Field is believed to contain sufficient helium reserves to support production for decades.
"This plant is beginning production operations at a good time as both suppliers and manufacturing end-users of helium are still recovering from a global helium supply shortage. Big Piney alone won't solve the supply issue, but it will help to provide additional helium at this critical time. Going forward, the Big Piney plant will further diversify our helium source portfolio in our efforts to reliably serve our customers," said Walter Nelson, general manager - Worldwide Helium at Air Products.
Air Products has pioneered many of the helium extraction, production, distribution and storage technologies used in the industry today. Air Products maintains the world's largest helium production and distribution system and operates numerous facilities around the world.
"Helium produced at the Big Piney plant will help to ensure long-term security of supply for MATHESON's existing helium customers, and provides us with an exciting opportunity to expand our business. Big Piney's location in southwest Wyoming, close to our existing supply from ExxonMobil, provides logistics synergies and promotes a stable, efficient and reliable supply chain to serve our customers located in the U.S. and abroad," said John Bigham, vice president, Global Helium for MATHESON.
MATHESON manages the global helium business of TNSC under the name MATHESON Global Helium. TNSC is the leading helium supplier in Japan, and is one of only five major industrial gas companies in the world with direct access to helium sources.
Helium is used in many unique and valued applications including: magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); lifting for high altitude scientific research balloons, blimps and party balloons; fiber optics and semi-conductor manufacturing; metallurgy; breathing atmospheres for deep diving or unique blood gas medical mixtures; analytical chemistry; pressurizing and purging pipes, vessels, and other critical equipment; leak detection; and other advanced applications.
About Air Products
Air Products (NYSE:APD) provides atmospheric, process and specialty gases; performance materials; equipment; and technology. For over 70 years, the company has enabled customers to become more productive, energy efficient and sustainable. Recognized as one of the world's most innovative companies by both Thomson Reuters and Forbes magazine, more than 21,000 employees in over 50 countries supply effective solutions to the energy, environment and emerging markets. These include semiconductor materials, refinery hydrogen, coal gasification, natural gas liquefaction, and advanced coatings and adhesives. In fiscal 2013, Air Products had sales of $10.2 billion. For more information, visit www.airproducts.com.
About Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc.
Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc. is a single source for industrial, medical, specialty and electronic gases, gas handling equipment, high performance purification systems, engineering and gas management services, and on-site gas generation with a mission to deliver innovative solutions for global customer requirements. Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc. is the largest subsidiary of Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation, one of the top five suppliers of industrial, specialty, and electronics gases in the world. For more information, visit www.mathesongas.com.
NOTE: This release may contain forward-looking statements within the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on management's reasonable expectations and assumptions as of the date of this release regarding important risk factors. Actual performance and financial results may differ materially from projections and estimates expressed in the forward-looking statements because of many factors not anticipated by management, including risk factors described in the Company's Form 10K for its fiscal year ended September 30, 2013.
SOURCE Air Products