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Industrial-gas company Air Products and Chemicals Inc. ( APD - Analyst Report ) will showcase its PolarFit cryogenic solutions at the forthcoming PTXi 2012 Expo scheduled to be held in Rosemont, Illinois, from May 8-10. PolarFit is used for grinding, deflashing, process cooling and inerting.
The company will feature, at PTXi 2012, the PolarFit ultra-fine-grinding mill, a versatile grinding system, which breaks hard-to-grind materials into smaller particle sizes in a cost-effective manner.
The PolarFit mill is geared for cryogenic size reduction of a throng of materials including nutraceuticals, pharmaceuticals, pigments, plastics and power coatings. It utilizes multiple size-reduction mechanisms to deliver consistent yield of particles between 45 microns and 240 microns and sometimes as small as 10 microns.
The PolarFit ultra-fine-grinding mill effectively uses liquid nitrogen to remove heat generated in the grinding process by controlling the temperature of the product or the mill. The benefits of this includes ultra-fine particle size, more uniform particle distribution, higher yields of particles in target range, enhanced product quality and lower production costs.
Air Products offers industrial gases as well as a variety of polymer and performance chemicals and serves technology, energy, industrial and health care customers globally. The company competes with Praxair Inc. ( PX - Analyst Report ) among others.
Air Products' industrial gas-based technologies and process improvement solutions help manufacturers boost production rates, improve product quality, safety and efficiency while reducing overall operational costs. The company’s lab in Allentown, Pennsylvania, offers manufacturers access to the latest testing equipment and services, which helps in determining the feasibility of using cryogenics in their production process and improving throughput and quality while minimizing costs.
Air Products benefits from a long-term take-or-pay contract, a consolidated industry structure, diverse customer base and sustained pricing power. However, soaring energy and raw material costs pose a threat to margin expansion.
The company’s profit fell nearly 3% year over year in the most recent quarter. Sales dipped 2% to $2,344 million due to lower volumes, reflecting challenging conditions in Europe.
Going ahead, Air Products anticipates that both revenues and earnings will rise during the remainder of 2012 as well as in 2013. The company expects to enter into new business deals in 2012, which are expected to boost growth.
We are currently Neutral on Air Products. The stock holds a short-term Zacks #5 Rank (Strong Sell).
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