IN ITS LARGEST SINGLE U.S. INDUSTRIAL INVESTment, Air Liquide America Corp. started up the first of two air-separation units (ASUs), part of a $150 million air-separation and cogeneration complex in Geismar, La., at the end of October.
The cogeneration unit has been operating since July. The new complex will supply gaseous oxygen, nitrogen, and steam to Air Liquide's chemical and refining customers along the Mississippi River.
The second ASU will be commissioned by the end of the first quarter of 2000. Staggering the start-up of the two ASUs optimizes the schedule about the issues of oxygen demand and capital costs.
The new plant supplies more than 5,200 tonnes/day of air-separation products, including gaseous oxygen and gaseous nitrogen to Air Liquide's existing pipeline network between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. The ASUs will also supply liquid oxygen, nitrogen, and argon for merchant distribution.
The 80-Mw cogeneration facility, fed by multiple sources of natural gas, provides power to the ASUs and supplies steam to neighboring chemical facilities.