Air Liquide Builds Pilot Ammonia Cracking Plant

29.03.2023 - Air Liquide plans to build an ammonia cracking pilot plant in the Port of Antwerp, Belgium. The plant will be based on a novel process using Air Liquide’s proprietary technologies and is scheduled to start operating in 2024.

Ammonia can be used an energy carrier for hydrogen The cracking process splits ammonia into its constituent parts - hydrogen and nitrogen — making it an ideal carrier for transporting hydrogen over long distances. When produced with renewable energy sources, the ammonia (and hydrogen) has a low-carbon footprint, contributing to decarbonization efforts. 

Executive vice president Michael Graff said: “Ammonia cracking complements Air Liquide’s already thorough portfolio of hydrogen technologies and adds yet another technological solution to enable the development of a hydrogen global market. More than ever, the group is committed to making hydrogen a key element of the fight against climate change, in particular for the decarbonization of heavy industry and mobility.”

The Flemish Agency for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (VLAIO) has confirmed it will provide financial support to the project.

Air Liquide has previously stated its aim to at least triple its hydrogen revenues to more than €6 billion by 2035, by when it also plans to invest about €8 billion in the renewable and low-carbon hydrogen supply chain.

Earlier this month, Saudi Aramco and Linde Engineering announced plans to jointly develop new ammonia cracking technology and build a demonstration plant in northern Germany.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist