UN Goal 9 - Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
Child page UN Goal 9
Introduction UN Goals
In 2015, under the aegis of the United Nations, the international community adopted Agenda 2030. It lays out 17 global goals together with the call to implement measures to achieve those goals. In particular, the Sustainable Development Goals No Poverty, Health and Well-being, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, Resonsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action and Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions are of great importance to Messer. Both global and local projects and activities, as well as initiatives supported by Messer, contribute to various sustainability goals. The individual projects contribute to long-term improvement and can be viewed here:
Sustainable growth through investment
In October 2020, Messer started up its third air separation unit in Germany. It is located in Speyer on the grounds of the insulation manufacturer SAINT-GOBAIN ISOVER G+H AG. The oxygen it supplies to the company improves the efficiency of the burners in its glass melting operation. With this additional unit, Messer is reinforcing its presence in southwestern Germany. Supply routes to a large share of our local customers have already been shortened considerably. Rastatt-based Basi holds a stake in the unit and takes some of the liquid products.
Messer extended its partnership with Vertex Bioenergy and is building a new, fully automated CO2 recovery unit at its location in Lacq. The unit can be operated remotely and is part of Messer’s long-term corporate strategy. At the same time, the unit supports the expansion of the CO2 business in northern Spain. With this investment of about 11.3 million euros, Messer is doubling its future production capacity in Lacq to 130,000 metric tons of raw CO2 per year. Start-up is planned for July 2022. Vertex Bioenergy’s Lacq plant produces 235 million liters per year of biofuel made from corn. That makes it a European market leader in the biofuel industry as well as the leading biofuel producer in Spain and France.
Messer has started construction of a new air separation unit in Vilaseca near Tarragona. It will be Messer’s fifth unit in Spain. In the final expansion stage, its daily production capacity will reach 2,400 metric tons of nitrogen, oxygen and argon. The unit is being built on the grounds of Messer’s filling plant there, which will remain at the site: only a few tanks and one filling unit will be converted. The project is scheduled for completion by December 2021. The new production unit will be connected to Messer’s pipeline network to satisfy the increasing demand for oxygen and nitrogen to serve the chemical industry in Tarragona. The region’s manufacturing companies will also be supplied with gases – liquefied in tank trucks and in gaseous form in gas cylinders. During the planning and construction phase, some 200 people will be working on the project; after completion, Messer will employ more than 20 people at the new unit.
Saint-Gobain Isover has been active on the Polish market since 1993 with its own production of insulation materials made of glass wool and mineral wool. At the Gliwice site, oxygen is used to optimize the combustion process of the glass wool and mineral wool furnaces. In 2020, Messer signed a long-term agreement to supply oxygen from a Vacuum Pressure Swing Adsorption (VPSA) unit. The new VPSA plant is scheduled to go into operation in April 2022.
In 2020, Messer took over the companies of Air Liquide in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The acquired operations include a total of four on-site units for oxygen and nitrogen as well as a filling plant for cylinder gases. Messer has already been active in Slovakia and the Czech Republic since 1991. Prior to this acquisition, Messer in Slovakia had three-cylinder gas filling plants, one hydrogen unit and three on-site units. In the Czech Republic, Messer previously operated one air separation unit with a direct pipeline supplying three major customers as well as twelve on-site units, two-cylinder gas filling plants and done acetylene plant.
Messer started up a new unit that recovers and stores high-purity methane at the site of a fertilizer manufacturer in Hungary. Methane is a byproduct of treating the purge gas from the ammonia plant. It is separated out of the process and stored in liquid form with a purity of more than 99.5 percent. The unit has a capacity of 700 metric tons per year. High-purity methane has a wide range of applications: It is used as calibration gas for heating and combustion equipment, for example, and as fuel in aerospace testing. It is also used in an extremely wide range of applications in the chemical industry and in the manufacture of carbon fiber components such as brake linings.
In the course of installing an argon recovery unit in Slovakia – a project of Messer’s Slovakian subsidiary in collaboration with Messer’s engineering team in Krefeld, Germany – two argon storage tanks with a capacity of 200 cubic meters each were installed.
In July 2020, Messer in Slovenia put into operation our longest underground nitrogen pipeline made of polyethylene to date. The supply line is 8,028 meters long. The project was carried out in collaboration with Messer’s engineering experts from Krefeld, Germany. Along its course, the pipeline crosses more than 200 plots of land, one stream, one main road, and one natural gas pipeline before finally reaching our customer, a tire manufacturer in Kranj. The pipeline carries high-purity nitrogen from our air separation unit in Škofja Loka.
In 2020, Messer started up a new carbon dioxide (CO2) unit in Keyes, California. Messer is supplying existing and new customers in northern California and the surrounding regions from this new plant by rail. The new unit produces up to 450 metric tons of CO2 per day, which is used in carbonated beverages and to freeze and chill food products as well as in the electronics industry of the region. Messer recently began working with Aemetis, Inc. and taking raw CO2 from its ethanol plant for processing. Messer operates two other CO2 units and two air separation units in California.
In 2020, Messer started up a new air separation unit in Adel, Georgia, investing more than 40 million dollars in the highly efficient plant. It supplies gases to companies across the southeastern U.S., strengthening Messer’s presence in that fast-growing region. Our customers there serve the healthcare sector, produce food and beverages, manufacture metal and glass, and operate independent welding and gas centers.
The air separation unit we successfully started up in Claymont, Delaware, in 2020 is our largest atmospheric gases production unit currently in operation in the USA. Its investment cost was about 100 million dollars. The unit produces up to 1,200 metric tons per day of liquefied gases such as oxygen, nitrogen and argon. It also supplies gaseous products via pipeline to customers up and down the Delaware River. The Delaware Valley metropolitan region’s customer base spans almost all industries, including metal processing, the food and glass industry, chemicals, healthcare and the energy sector. Thanks to the latest technology, our unit features extremely efficient energy consumption – which is also one of the ways we help reduce CO2 emissions.
In 2020, Messer in the Americas started the construction of a new, state-of-the-art air separation unit in Indiana. This 38-million-dollar investment in Indianapolis as a business location underscores our strategic commitment to further expansion in the USA. The expansion of our production capacities will enable us to satisfy the increased demand for industrial, food-grade and medical gases throughout Indiana and the Midwest. We currently operate seven sites in Indiana and employ about 90 people there. With the new investment in Indianapolis, we are creating an additional 23 permanent jobs.
In August 2020, an air separation unit went into operation at Messer’s new production site in Kunming. The plant is located in the Anning Industrial Park in Yunnan Province in southwestern China. It will be operated by the subsidiary Anning Messer. With a production capacity of 300 metric tons per day of liquid oxygen, nitrogen and argon, it will supply our customers both in the industrial park and in the surrounding area.
To meet Xiangtan Iron & Steel’s increased gas demand, Messer started up a new air separation unit on the Xiangtan site. It has a capacity of 1,400 metric tons per day of gaseous oxygen. A new air separation unit has been installed in Ningxiang near the provincial capital of Changsha. With a capacity of up to 600 metric tons per day of liquefied gases, it is designed to meet the processing industry’s rapidly increasing demand and to reinforce Messer’s leading market position.
At the Shunde site, Messer has built a second air separation unit and doubled the production of liquefied gas to more than 1,200 metric tons per day. Most of the additional product will be consumed by the rapidly growing electronics industry.
In Thailand, Messer started out strictly as a distributor delivering gases by tank truck from China and Vietnam. At the same time, an application engineering department was established. Its specialists provided specific expertise to support a continuously growing customer base. Along with delivery of argon, nitrogen, oxygen and carbon dioxide by tank truck, gases are now also offered in cylinders. A storage facility for liquid argon was installed in Samut Prakan, and in September 2020, Messer filled the first cylinders at its own new filling plant in Bangpoo. Messer now supplies medical oxygen to medium-sized hospitals.
Akkordeon UN Goal 9
Messer presented its new Silensnow technology at Solutrans in Lyon, France, on November 19 - 23, 2019. Together with its partner Frappa, Messer developed the new cryogenic Silensnow technology for the temperature-controlled transport and logistics sector. This patented process for vans uses dry ice snow – carbon dioxide in solid form at -78.5 degrees Celsius – as its source of cooling. The cooling capacity of the dry ice is achieved through an indirect cooling system. This process meets the environmental and regulatory requirements of transport companies. Moreover, Messer has developed its own service station, which makes it possible to fill the system with dry ice safely and rapidly. As a byproduct of the chemical industry, the CO2 from Messer is collected and cleaned, liquefied and appropriately certified. It is used in a variety of applications. With Silensnow, it is used as a source of cooling when transporting fresh and frozen products to urban areas.
Messer Group and Messer Industries Western Europe are pursuing the goal of a strategically and technically reoriented IT infrastructure with modern, globally established standards. A standardized and flexibly scalable IT structure will create the basic conditions for improved business processes, for greater efficiency, flexibility and agility. Online collaboration and protection against cybercrime will also be reinforced.
Moreover, Messer continuously invests in a visible, modern internet presence that offers visitors satisfactory information and an easy means of contact. User-friendly e-services, online shops and search engine-optimized content will help customers find the desired search results and thereby make their purchase decision. In operation since October 2020 under the banner “Perfect Match,” the expanded digital platform now includes local e-services and online shops for hardware products such as pressure regulators and cylinder valves. Warehouse inventories and personalized sale prices can be displayed here.
Employees in the USA and Canada have access to a new SharePoint-based intranet for greater productivity. The new communication platform is compatible with mobile devices.
Among other things, it offers a search function, links to support tools and process support tools, and quick links to frequently visited resources and websites. The new SharePoint-based intranet solution will also be available in South America, thereby increasing networking opportunities for employees of our subsidiaries in both North and South America.
Since 2020, ASCO Carbon Dioxide has been offering digital add-on products to its customers in the dry ice production segment: The “i-Series Product Line” develops the potentials and benefits of networking and IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) for their dry ice production units. Based on sensor components and state-of-the-art communication technology, ASCO offers services in the area of remote access, remote data and remote management services to interested companies. With this development – just like with the market launch of the new portable CO₂ safety detectors – ASCO is addressing specific customer requests.
After 2016 and 2019, Messer, the world’s largest family-run industrial gases specialist, has once again earned the Axia Best Managed Companies Award in 2020. Presented by Deloitte, WirtschaftsWoche, Credit Suisse and the Federation of German Industries (BDI), the award and stamp of quality recognizes extremely well-managed companies. As one of the award winners, Messer once again impressed the jury with its first-class business management characterized by high innovative force, a strategy focused on the long term, and strong governance structures. In justifying the award, Deloitte observed that Messer is not only a benchmark for extremely well-managed medium-sized companies, but at the same time emblematically represents the future of Germany as a business location.
Industrial power lines must provide a great deal of electrical power, however, part of which is lost due to electrical resistance. Superconductors that conduct electricity without losses solve this problem. The prerequisite for this is a very low operating temperature. In the context of the DEMO200 project, a superconducting busbar system is being developed for series production. For DEMO200’s pilot project, which started in 2020, Messer developed a new technical approach for cooling the busbar: to reach the required operating temperature of minus 206 degrees Celsius, the minus 196 degree liquid nitrogen is further “subcooled.” For this purpose, it is fed into a vacuum-insulated tank where expansion under negative pressure cools it down to minus 209 degrees Celsius.
International: Supraleitung für Großverbraucher
Industrielle Starkstromleitungen müssen sehr viel Strom zur Verfügung stellen, ein Teil davon geht jedoch durch elektrischen Widerstand verloren. Die Lösung sind Supraleitungen, die Strom verlustfrei leiten. Voraussetzung dafür ist eine sehr tiefe Betriebstemperatur. Im Rahmen des Projektes DEMO200 soll ein supraleitendes Stromschienensystem zur Serienreife entwickelt werden. Für dessen Pilotprojekt, das 2020 startete, entwickelte Messer zur Kühlung der Stromschiene einen neuen technischen Ansatz: Um die benötigte Betriebstemperatur von minus 206 Grad Celsius zu erreichen, wird der flüssige, minus 196 Grad kalte Stickstoff weiter „unterkühlt“. Dafür gelangt er in einen vakuumisolierten Behälter, in dem er durch die Entspannung im Unterdruck auf minus 209 Grad Celsius abkühlt.
Together with twelve other partners from five European countries, the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology UMSICHT is carrying out the EU project “TO-SYN-FUEL.” It is designed to show how thermo catalytic reforming (TCR) can be used to convert organic waste – in this case, sewage sludge – into biofuels, green hydrogen and biochar. In 2020, a demonstration unit went into operation. It converts 500 kilograms per hour of dried sewage sludge into about 50 liters of standard-grade gasoline and diesel. Messer in Germany supported the project with regard to the technical layout along with the specification and design of the hydrogen tank.
Deutschland: Kraftstoff aus Klärschlamm
Gemeinsam mit elf weiteren Partnern aus fünf europäischen Ländern führt das Fraunhofer-Institut für Umwelt-, Sicherheits- und Energietechnik UMSICHT das EU-Projekt „TO-SYN-FUEL“ durch. Es soll zeigen, wie mit Hilfe des thermokatalytischen Reforming (TCR-Verfahren) organischer Abfall – in diesem Fall Klärschlamm –, in Biokraftstoffe, grünen Wasserstoff und Biokohle umgewandelt werden kann. 2020 ging eine Demonstrationsanlage in Betrieb, die pro Stunde 500 Kilogramm getrockneten Klärschlamm in etwa 50 Liter normgerechtes Benzin und Diesel umwandelt. Messer in Deutschland unterstützte das Projekt bezüglich der technischen Auslegung sowie der Definition und Konzeption des Wasserstofftanks.