Argon – is a chemical element in group 18 and period 3 of the Mendeleev’s periodic table, with atomic number 18 and symbol Ar. The third most common element in the earth’s atmosphere (after nitrogen and oxygen) – by volume 0,93%. Argon – is noble monoatomic gas without color, taste and smell.
– In the argon lasers;
– In the argon lamp and when filling the cavity of double-gazed window;
– As a protective environment while welding (arc welding, laser welding, contact welding) both metals (for example titanium) and nonmetals;
– As a plasma former in the plasmatron during welding and cutting;
– Argon has European food additive code E938, it is used in food industry as food additive, propellant and packaging gas.
– As a fire extinguishing medium in the gas extinguishing installations;
– In medicine during operations for the purification of air and cuts, as argon doesn’t form chemical compounds at room temperature;
– In the chemical synthesis to create an inert atmosphere when working with compounds unstable in air.
Due to the low argon content in the earth’s atmosphere — about 1/125, it is economically reasonable to obtain argon either as an option when building large air separation plants or as a separate installation for extracting argon from argon-containing tail gas (purge gas) where the proportion of argon is about 11-13%.
Argon production from condensate, as an option in the production of oxygen.
In the production of oxygen, argon is obtained by distillation of waste condensate, in which the argon content is higher than in the atmosphere, due to the extraction of oxygen and partially nitrogen. At a temperature of −185.9 ° C (87.3 Kelvin), argon is condensed in a separate column into a liquid and, as a liquid, is withdrawn into a storage tank. In such a production cycle, it is impossible to add argon production to the already existing oxygen production. Our company offers high-capacity air separation plants, including the production of argon, taking into account the best modern practices in the field of energy efficiency and with a high degree of argon extraction.
Argon production from ammonia tail gases
In such a production cycle, the argon production unit is implemented as a separate workshop with a cryogenic cycle, which at any time can be built on the already existing ammonia production. Taking into account the composition of the tail gas from ammonia production, such a cryogenic plant also serves as a source of a number of other gases, including hydrogen, which makes such a plant extremely cost-effective. Table 1 below shows the typical composition of the tail gas of ammonia production and the composition of the products obtained at the argon plant.
Such a plant is launched on third-party nitrogen until the plant is completely cooled down through the Linde cycle, after which tail gas is supplied to the plant, and argon and methane are extracted on the columns of the finished product. After that, the nitrogen is separated at the nitrogen separator. We emphasize once again that this method of producing argon is much more cost-effective than obtaining argon from the atmosphere, but we are implementing this method exclusively in nitrogen production, due to the availability of raw materials. An additional plus of the application of this method in nitrogen production is that the synthesis gas produced at the outlet is sent to the input of the nitrogen production. Our company offers argon production plants for nitrogen production meeting all the latest API, ASME, ANSI, IEC and ISO standards.