Munich, 2 October 2012 – After a construction period of almost two years, the new Fraunhofer Center for Chemical-Biotechnological Processes (CBP) in Leuna was today officially opened by the Chancellor of Germany, Dr Angela Merkel. The main aim of the CBP is to transition innovative biotechnological and chemical processes to industrial-scale production, thus enabling companies to manufacture basic chemical products from regenerative raw materials. Linde affiliate Linde Engineering Dresden GmbH (LEDD) was responsible for engineering the process units, the supporting infrastructure and necessary media and utilities. LEDD was commissioned by the Fraunhofer Institute to plan and build five pilot-scale process units, known as modules, for the CBP in December 2009, following an EU-wide tender.
"The CBP is an important milestone on the journey to advance green technologies. We are delighted that Linde Engineering Dresden was chosen as the general technology contractor. This has given us the chance to make a key contribution to a project that is highly challenging from both a technical and organisational perspective," states Professor Dr Aldo Belloni, Member of the Executive Board of Linde AG. "By paving the way for a cross-connect between established and bio-based process steps, the CBP is opening up attractive growth opportunities for Linde’s site in Leuna and the region as a whole."
As Fraunhofer CBP is part of the BioEconomy cluster in central Germany, German Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel and Dr Reiner Haseloff, Minister-President of the State of Saxony-Anhalt, also took the opportunity to visit the cluster. It primarily focuses on producing chemicals, materials and energy from wood and won the third round of the Leading-Edge Cluster Competition held by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) at the start of the year. As one of the cluster’s key partners, Linde is involved in further bio-economy projects.
Today, plastics, paints, adhesives and many key interim products for the chemicals industry are still made primarily using crude oil. Regenerative raw materials can help reduce dependency on crude oil and cut CO2 emissions. However, many of these processes – which have the advantage of not conflicting with food and livestock supplies – have only been tested under lab conditions. The new CBP and the BioEconomy cluster in Leuna aim to bridge the gap between laboratory and industrial-scale production, paving the way for wider use of regenerative raw materials.
For Linde, the Leuna site is not only significant for the development and scaling of new technologies, but also as one of the largest and most modern gases production centres in Europe. The Linde Group produces industrial gases such as oxygen, nitrogen, various rare gases and hydrogen at the site, supplying customers based at the Leuna chemical park and across Germany. The company has invested over EUR 500 million in the site since 1991, building, for example, a modern Remote Operations Centre for air separation plants in Germany, Austria and Switzerland as well as a TÜV-certified, green hydrogen production plant based on regenerative raw materials.
About The Linde Group
The Linde Group is a world-leading gases and engineering company with around 51,000 employees in more than 100 countries worldwide. In the 2011 financial year, it generated revenue of EUR 13.787 bn. The strategy of The Linde Group is geared towards long-term profitable growth and focuses on the expansion of its international business with forward-looking products and services. Linde acts responsibly towards its shareholders, business partners, employees, society and the environment – in every one of its business areas, regions and locations across the globe. The Group is committed to technologies and products that unite the goals of customer value and sustainable development.
Under the "Clean Technology by Linde" label, the company offers a wide range of products and technologies that help to render renewable energy sources financially viable, and significantly slow down the depletion of fossil resources or reduce the level of CO2 emitted. This ranges from specialty gases for solar module manufacturing, industrial-scale CO2 separation and application technologies to alternative fuels and energy carriers such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) and hydrogen.
For more information, see The Linde Group online at http://www.linde.com.