Air Products (NYSE: APD)today announced that INOX Air Products Ltd., its joint venture in India, has signed a long-term contract with POSCO Maharashtra Steel Private Limited (PMSPL) to supply on-site nitrogen and hydrogen gases to its new facility located in Vile Bhagad, Maharashtra, Western India.
PMSPL is a subsidiary of POSCO, the world’s fourth largest steel producer by output, and the site will be POSCO’s second steel galvanizing project outside of Korea and the first investment for production in India.
INOX Air Products will build and operate a high purity nitrogen plant and a steam methane reformer (SMR) hydrogen plant designed to meet the specific requirements of PMSPL’s facility in Maharashtra. Both the nitrogen plant and the SMR are product offerings from Air Products’ PRISM® gas generation portfolio. The plants are expected to come onstream in late 2011.
“The Maharashtra steel galvanizing facility is a major investment for POSCO in India, and we need a reliable and flexible gas supplier to support us,” said Mr. Jae Bong Kim, general manager of PMSPL. “We are impressed by the global team effort of Air Products and INOX Air Products. They understand our needs and have come up with creative solutions for reliable and cost effective supply to meet our requirements.”
POSCO is already an Air Products customer at its home base in Korea. The India plant, once completed, will be POSCO’s second facility to produce both hot-dip galvanized and galvanealed sheets outside of Korea. Galvanized steel is used in many outdoor, marine and industrial applications due to its resistance to corrosion. The automobile industry is the primary target market for PMSPL in India.
“We are honored to be selected as the gas supplier for this important project. This is a highly strategic win for Air Products, reflecting our capabilities to follow our global customers as they enter the Indian market,” said Bob Dixon, senior vice president of Global Merchant Gases at Air Products. “India is a high growth market for Air Products. Through our joint venture partner INOX Air Products, and using Air Products’ superior technology and cost-effective solutions, we are there to help our customers succeed in the market place.”
Air Products’ PRISM line of gas generation systems supply nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen to more than 1,500 customers in over 30 countries worldwide. Air Products’ on-site hydrogen SMR offerings were enhanced by a technology acquisition in 2008 and offer flows across a wide range of requirements with highly efficient use of natural gas. Global markets currently served by Air Products’ entire PRISM line of gas generation systems include glass, steel, electronics and semiconductors, non-ferrous metals, metals processing, chemicals, food processing and packaging, and energy production and processing.