Product News: Peak Scientific Offers a Solution to the World Helium Shortage
07 Feb 2013
Recent international studies have confirmed that the world will run out of helium gas in 25 years if current usage remains unchecked. As well as concerns for the future the gases scarcity has seen its price rise by 70% in recent years.
Used in a multitude of applications such as cryogenic applications, purging/pressuring, welding cover gas and controlled atmosphere testing, demand for helium gas is literally outstripping supply. Around 32% of all helium is used in chromatography laboratory applications specifically the cryogenic category, meaning that cryogenics are the heaviest user of helium gas. Many of these applications require helium exclusively, but not all, and those are the ones that need to seek alternatives. Gas chromatography can use alternative gases and this is where Peak Scientific can help. Gas chromatographers can help prolong the life of helium by switching to an alternative such as hydrogen or nitrogen.
Helium has dominated gas chromatography due to the level comparison between it, hydrogen and nitrogen. Nitrogen is less efficient than helium and hydrogen has been avoided in the past due to safety concerns with hydrogen cylinders. These concerns are based on hydrogen cylinders being fairly unstable if not stored correctly or containing too much pressure. Peak Scientific’s solution to this is the Hydrogen Gas Generator. Much more efficient in gas chromatography than nitrogen, Hydrogen Gas Generators now eliminate many of the original safety concerns associated with hydrogen cylinders as well as providing laboratories with a continuous supply of hydrogen for gas chromatography applications.
Hydrogen Gas Generators are small enough to fit into most labs, are easy to use and very efficient.
Rather than being created remotely and then bottled, transported and stored the hydrogen is generated on demand right there in the lab through the electrolysis of water. This means that switching to this alternative will ensure gas chromatographers no longer need to worry about gc carrier gas supply or increasing in cost of helium. Switching can be achieved with very little effect on previous Gas Chromatography analysis and provides a safe, sustainable, affordable and long-term supply.