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Hydrogen expert for more than 50 years and precursor of the movement for a hydrogen society

As a pioneer in hydrogen, Air Liquide is convinced that this molecule will be decisive in the energy transition. The Group is responding to the urgency of climate change and is committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. Hydrogen will be key to achieving this goal by making it possible to meet two major challenges to which Air Liquide is committed: decarbonizing heavy industry and revolutionizing clean mobility.

  • Hydrogen will represent 22% of the energy mix in 2050

  • A strong commitment to produce renewable or low-carbon hydrogen

  • Mastering the entire hydrogen value chain

  • Technologies and know-how for multiple applications in industry and mobility

Hydrogen, at the heart of Air Liquide's activities

Thanks to its unique hydrogen expertise developed in industry (space, aeronautics, heavy industry) over the last 50 years, Air Liquide masters the entire value chain: production, transport, storage and distribution.

This unique positioning and technological expertise, particularly in extreme cryogenics, makes Air Liquide a key player in the implementation of hydrogen projects, enabling it to meet all the needs of its customers in many sectors of activity.

Hydrogen sales currently represent 1.2 million tons per year for a turnover of 2 billion euros.

Hydrogen has many uses.  As a high density energy carrier, non-toxic, non-corrosive and non-polluting, hydrogen can be used in fuel cells to generate heat and electricity. It is also a useful raw material for many industrial sectors. It can be stored on a large scale and transported in liquid or gaseous form.

Hydrogen is an essential solution to address the global warming emergency. Whether it is a question of decarbonizing the most emitting industries or accompanying the transition to clean transportation, hydrogen allows us to tackle the major challenges of the century and to collectively invent a sustainable future.

Matthieu Giard

Executive Vice President in charge of the Industrial Merchant & Hydrogen business lines

€8 bn invested in the entire low-carbon hydrogen value chain by 2035

3 GW of electrolysis capacity invested by 2030

A major lever for the decarbonization of industry

Through its Large Industries business line, Air Liquide already serves customers in the world's main industrial basins. This proximity, combined with our expertise and technologies, allows us to develop synergies between the industrial and mobility markets, to ensure the availability of hydrogen in large quantities.

Hydrogen can be used in many industrial sectors that are challenging to decarbonize, for its energy potential or as a raw material:

  • Refining, to desulfurize hydrocarbons
  • Chemistry, to produce methanol and synthetic fuels
  • Metallurgy, for heat treatment

But also in Electronics, as a carrier gas, research and analysis, welding, cement production, glassmaking...

Revolutionizing clean transportation

Renewable or low-carbon, hydrogen is at the heart of the clean transport revolution. As a precursor of hydrogen mobility, Air Liquide, through its Hydrogen Energy activity, has been using its existing industrial facilities, technologies and expertise to develop applications for transportation and in particular hydrogen stations for over 20 years. Hydrogen-powered electric vehicles are equipped with fuel cells that produce electricity on board the vehicle from the onboard hydrogen. With a recharge time of less than 5 minutes, allowing an autonomy of more than 600 km, hydrogen energy is particularly well suited to captive fleets: cabs, buses, utility vehicles, forklifts, etc.

Thanks to hydrogen, Air Liquide is supporting the transition of the transport sector towards environmentally friendly mobility, in particular through its expertise in liquid hydrogen, which is particularly well suited to intensive mobility. The most promising markets for heavy mobility are road freight, maritime and aviation.

Reducing emissions from heavy transport (trucks, buses, boats, planes, etc.) also makes it possible to considerably improve air quality and limit noise levels in dense areas.

Air Liquide continues to develop large-scale projects and strategic alliances to accelerate the transition to hydrogen for mobility.

Producing low-carbon hydrogen

In this context, a major challenge for Air Liquide is to scale up the production of renewable and low-carbon hydrogen to decarbonize our activities and those of our customers committed to the energy transition.

Our technologies and our capacity for innovation enable us to offer, depending on market needs, renewable or low-carbon hydrogen produced

  • By electrolysis from renewable energies (wind, solar, hydro) or low-carbon sources
  • By methane or biomethane reforming with CO2 capture and storage

Thanks to electrolysis, renewable energies - intermittent by nature - can be converted into hydrogen. As the molecule can be stored and transported so that it can be accessed at any time, hydrogen is a way of not losing the renewable energy produced during peak production periods.

The Hydrogen Council

Launched in 2017 in Davos under the impetus of Air Liquide and Toyota, the Hydrogen Council is a global initiative designed to bring the voice of hydrogen to the international stage in order to promote a long-term vision of hydrogen technologies and uses, and to accelerate its large-scale deployment by mobilizing all the players in the ecosystem, both industrial and political. As such, it has published several studies on the subject.

Today, the Hydrogen Council brings together more than 150 members - companies from the energy, transport and industry sectors as well as financial players - all determined to contribute to limiting global warming to 1.5°C.