South Africa strikes new gold, focus on industrial use of 'Helium'

 You must have heard of helium. The gas is used in balloons, but it is also used elsewhere, like in liquid-fueled rocket tanks and supersonic wind tunnels.

South Africa is now trying to cash in on its untapped helium reserves as the global market for gas grows. Take a look at our next detailed report. This South African heartland used to be known for its gold, but while searching for natural gas to Run a nearby gold mine, Stefano Moroni and his partner found even more valuable treasure helium we came down.

We got the gas samples, we took it up, Robert, and that was when we discovered they were varying concentrations of between two and four percent of helium in our gas, and that was when we knew we had something special. What was your reaction when you found out? I can't say that on camera, [ Laughter, ] helium has become a precious resource with the development of new technologies. Without it, there would be no electronic chips, smartphones, or medical scanners.

It is even essential to cool down rocket engines. So what we've got over here? South Africa joins the small club of countries producing the rare gas and surpasses world number one. Us by far The united states produces at around 0.35. Our average is 3. 4 percent, so already we're 10 times higher than the united states and that's our average.

We have wells over here at 12 percent, which is completely unprecedented and never seen before. Murani's firm renogen plans to build a liquefaction plant that will process natural gas for domestic use and liquid helium for world export. The site could provide as much as seven percent of world production.

The extraction process is also green. Renigen does not use fracking a controversial process that contaminates groundwater and causes small earthquakes. That means that this helium may also be the world's cleanest.

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