PASCO -- A Spokane-based industrial supplier expects to have its $500,000 hydrogen production facility in Pasco operational in July.
The new facility will bring a small boost to business and jobs in Pasco, said Michael Sutley, vice president and general manager of OXARC Inc.
OXARC sells welding and industrial supplies wholesale and retail from 10 locations in Washington, three in Idaho and two in Oregon.
The Pasco facility at 716 S. Oregon Ave. serves as the company's main production hub.
The new facility will be at 1530 Dietrich Road, near Basin Disposal Transfer, where it will serve as a station to store liquid hydrogen from Sacramento in a large tank.
From the tank, the gas will be compressed into smaller tanks and trucks for distribution.
The facility will replace the need to buy pre-compressed hydrogen gas from a company in Vancouver, Wash., Sutley said.
OXARC will hire two employees -- to fill tanks and drive trucks -- and contract with seven construction workers to complete the project, he said.
The new facility falls in line with the steady growth of OXARC, which has added 10 employees this year, for a total of 65 employees, Sutley said.
OXARC sells its hydrogen to ZeaChem Inc., a Boardman company that produces alternative fuels, Energy Northwest and other companies.
The company also sells oxygen, nitrogen, argon, helium, dry ice and more.
But Pasco-produced hydrogen hasn't yet arrived. Right now the facility is a concrete slab.
Installation of the facilities tank should begin around July 9, Sutley said. And the entire facility should be operational shortly afterward.