Home Energy Gazprom to become one of major players in global helium market

Gazprom to become one of major players in global helium market

  • Amur GPP will increase the Company’s helium production by 13 times.
  • Construction readiness of the helium hub near Vladivostok is above 70 per cent.
  • Contract has been signed for the delivery of LNG-powered freight trucks to carry helium.

A presentation of a helium production and marketing project that forms part of Gazprom’s Eastern Gas Program took place today at the Lakhta Center in St. Petersburg.

Taking part in the event were Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, Vitaly Markelov, Deputy Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, Sergey Kogogin, Director General of KAMAZ, and Lyubov Brish, Director General of Gazprom Helium Service.

Presentation of helium production and marketing project that forms part of Gazprom’s Eastern Gas Program held at Lakhta Center in St. Petersburg

Lyubov Brish, Alexey Miller, Sergey Kogogin, and Evgeny Yelin during presentation of helium production and marketing project

Gazprom is building the Amur Gas Processing Plant (GPP, the project is 66 per cent complete) in the east of Russia. Here, the multi-component gas extracted from the Chayandinskoye and, in the longer term, Kovyktinskoye fields and delivered via the Power of Siberia gas pipeline will undergo processing to produce valuable components, including helium in liquid form. Helium is much in demand in high-tech industries. The demand for helium is growing, especially in the Asia-Pacific region. With a capacity of up to 60 million cubic meters per year, the Amur GPP will become a global leader in helium production.

Helium production and marketing project that forms part of Eastern Gas Program

Helium production and marketing project that forms part of Eastern Gas Program

Marketable helium will be delivered from the Amur GPP in containers preserving the temperature of –269 degrees Celsius to the Logistics Center for thermally-insulated containers near Vladivostok and subsequently exported via the ports of the Primorye Territory. The Logistics Center, which is being set up in the Nadezhdinskaya PDA, will become the world’s largest hub for servicing thermally-insulated helium containers for supplying liquid helium to the global market. It is planned that the Logistics Center will have a capacity to perform upward of 4,500 process operations with containers per year. The facility’s construction readiness is above 70 per cent.

The containers will be carried from and to the plant, hub and ports by KAMAZ-5490 Neo freight trucks of Russian make powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) which is an eco-friendly type of motor fuel. The modification of KAMAZ-5490 Neo powered by LNG was developed specifically for Gazprom and presented during the event.

Presentation of helium production and marketing project that forms part of Gazprom’s Eastern Gas Program held at Lakhta Center in St. Petersburg

KAMAZ-5490 Neo powered by liquefied natural gas

A freight truck of this modification has two cryogenic fuel tanks for 530 liters of LNG each, which is a sufficient amount of fuel for the vehicle to cover a distance of up to 1,400 kilometers without refueling. The freight trucks were manufactured in line with the requirements of the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR). Each truck is equipped with modern safety systems (ABS, VDCS), satellite navigation system, and the ITIS system designed for monitoring, recording and control of motor vehicles and drivers.

During the event, Lyubov Brish and Sergey Kogogin signed a contract for the delivery of 18 LNG-powered freight trucks by April 1, 2021. The vehicle fleet of Gazprom Helium Service will be provided with the required services at the truck manufacturer’s service centers located in the Amur Region, Primorye Territory, and Khabarovsk Territory.

“After the Amur GPP reaches its full capacity, Gazprom will become a major player in the international helium market. The Company will increase its helium production volumes by 13 times, which makes about a third of the current global demand. Importantly, Gazprom will reach this result in close interaction with Russian industrial enterprises. Cooperation with KAMAZ is a vivid example of this,” said Alexey Miller.

The event also featured a presentation of buses powered by natural gas which are purchased by the city of Saint Petersburg under a pilot project run jointly with Gazprom Gazomotornoye Toplivo with a view to developing the NGV market. The use of eco-friendly public transport makes urban environment more comfortable. The Company is planning to increase the number of gas refueling stations in the city to 25 by 2024.

Background

Gazprom Helium Service (before July 2020 – Gazprom Gazenergoset Geliy) is the company authorized to implement the Helium Tank Logistics Center (Hub) investment project in the Primorye Territory.

In February 2020, Gazprom Gazenergoset Geliy and KAMAZ signed a Roadmap for a batch production of LNG-powered freight trucks that will transport helium from the Amur GPP.

The project of Gazprom Gazomotornoye Toplivo for the creation of a CNG filling station network in the territory of St. Petersburg was recognized as one of strategic importance for the city.