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Air Liquide boosts development of biogas purification units

French industrial gas group Air Liquide has announced the commissioning of 12 biogas purification units in the last 12 months in Europe.

With these new units, Air Liquide triples its biogas purification capacity on the European continent.

Overall, Air Liquide has designed and deployed worldwide 50 biogas purification units in order to transform biogas into biomethane and inject it into the natural gas networks.

The 12 new biogas purification units commissioned by Air Liquide are located in France, in the UK, in Hungary and in Denmark. Five of these units, representing a total investment of €12m, are operated by Air Liquide.

Air Liquide generates long-term contracts for the production of biomethane for Europe's natural gas grids, which supply notably the transportation fleets that run on bio-NGV (Natural Gas for Vehicles).

François Darchis, senior-vice president, member of the Air Liquide group's Executive Committee supervising Innovation, said: "These new biomethane production contracts illustrate the ability of Air Liquide to leverage its technologies to incubate new businesses.

"By positioning on the entire chain from biogas purification to distribution with bio-NGV stations, Air Liquide is contributing to meeting energy and environmental challenges."

Biogas is produced during the treatment of waste (coming from farming, household waste and industrial activities).

Biogas purification technology is based on the use of patented polymer membranes manufactured by Air Liquide. This powerful system separates the components of biogas, and generates a biomethane that can be injected into the natural gas network. Used as fuel in vehicles, bio natural gas or biomethane is also called bio-NGV (Natural Gas for Vehicles).

Bio-NGV, like hydrogen, is a clean transportation solution, according to Air Liquide. This fuel, of non-fossil origin, is part of a circular economy (from the conversion of waste to the mobility of the vehicle). Using biogas in a reformer will also enable the production of carbon-free hydrogen, in line with the Group's Blue Hydrogen commitment for 2020.

In 2014, Air Liquide acquired FordonsGas, Sweden's leading distributor of bio-NGV, which operates nearly 50 stations in Sweden.

These bio-NGV stations enable taxis, corporate fleets, buses and passenger cars to procure environmentally friendly fuel that is nearly 70% produced from renewable energies.