Air Liquide and KBR to deliver low-carbon ammonia and hydrogen solutions

Air Liquide’s Engineering & Construction Division partners with KBR to provide fully integrated low-carbon ammonia solutions based on Autothermal Reforming (ATR) technology. As a world leader in ATR, Air Liquide offers a suitable solution for large-scale low-carbon hydrogen (H2) production, which is combined with nitrogen (N2) to create low-carbon ammonia (NH3). The collaboration with KBR, a global leader in ammonia technology, also supports the development of a low-carbon hydrogen market, as ammonia allows easy long-distance transportation of hydrogen.

Air Liquide brings its unique expertise in oxygen-based ATR technology, while KBR contributes its mastery in ammonia production technology, with over 250 ammonia plants worldwide. The joint solutions ensure exceptional energy efficiency and reliability, allowing up to 99% carbon capture in highly integrated industrial facilities when combined with carbon capture technology.

The global ammonia market size is projected to grow significantly, reaching around 129 billion US dollars by 2030, with a yearly average growth rate of 6.5% from 2022 to 2030. Currently, ammonia is primarily used as an agricultural fertiliser.

In the long run, Air Liquide and KBR aim to advance low-carbon hydrogen as a pivotal component of the energy transition. With existing global supply chain infrastructure for ammonia production, transportation, and utilisation at large scale, ammonia can be efficiently transported over long distances. After transportation, it can be converted back into hydrogen, contributing to the decarbonisation of various industries and mobility.

In line with this vision, Air Liquide announced the construction of an industrial-scale ammonia cracking pilot plant in the port of Antwerp, Belgium, set to convert ammonia into hydrogen with an optimised carbon footprint, furthering the pursuit of sustainable energy solutions.

Michael J. Graff, Executive Vice President, Air Liquide Group, said: “Through this new offering, Air Liquide and KBR will combine their renowned respective expertise to provide efficient, reliable and competitive solutions for the production of ammonia and help the sector engage its low-carbon transition. These will enable customers to grow their business with an optimised carbon footprint, while also contributing to the development of the global hydrogen market. This further illustrates Air Liquide’s commitment to sustainable development, supporting customers in industry and mobility to decarbonise their products and operations. This is a core element of our ADVANCE strategic plan, which inseparably links financial and extra financial performance.”

Doug Kelly, KBR President, Technology, said: “We are excited to align with Air Liquide to further expand KBR’s low-carbon ammonia offerings for energy transition. Our differentiated ammonia synthesis technology has been the preferred choice for decades, with complete solutions for low-carbon and renewable ammonia with large-scale capacity of up to 10,000 MTPD. The addition of Air Liquide’s ATR technology further complements our low-carbon ammonia offerings as we work to promote technology solutions to decarbonise the world.”

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