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AkzoNobel introduces robotic biofouling removal with new service offering

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Coatings manufacturer AkzoNobel is providing ship owners with extra control over vessel efficiency and environmental performance via launch of its new hull management solution that guarantees speed loss of up to 1% over a ten-year period.

Intertrac HullCare combines high-performance hull coating technology from AkzoNobel’s International range, cutting-edge ROV inspection, and big data performance monitoring with proven hull cleaning techniques aligned with the BIMCO industry standard – resulting in what the company claims is the industry’s most environmentally sustainable hull management package to date.

Customers have the option to choose between a 5-year or 10-year scheme to help operators deliver maximum fleet efficiency. Over a 10-year period, AkzoNobel says Intertrac HullCare can help operators achieve step- change reductions in CO 2 emissions of up to 34,000 tonnes and fuel savings of €4.6million in comparison to a typical five-year fouling control system, by ensuring that smooth, clean hulls are maintained.

This is all achieved without upfront capital investment in on board robotic equipment installation and associated costs of vessel modification. The Intertrac HullCare data suite, operational cycle, value adding guidance and flexible docking intervals all ensure customers can take unprecedented control of their vessel’s hull management and make informed decisions, with confidence. Jean-Michel Gauthier, Director for AkzoNobel Marine, Protective and Yacht Coatings commented, “AkzoNobel is committed to investing in the sustainability of our company and that of our industry partners. Tackling the environmental impact of the shipping industry and in particular hull performance is an abiding priority we share with operators worldwide. Intertrac HullCare exemplifies how we are actively collaborating with customers to provide solutions which further their financial and sustainability performance as well as that of the Marine industry as a whole. The advanced remote inspection and cleaning technologies used, have been developed and tested in close collaboration with leading global equipment suppliers over the last 5 years. AkzoNobel is ranked at the top of several major indices when it comes to sustainability. Intertrac HullCare has sustainability at its heart and reflects our commitment to further the overall performance of our industry.”

The robotic cleaning system is provided by Norway’s ECOsubsea. “ECOsubsea’s system works by having a robotic cleaning system, move over a ship’s hull, gently removing the fouling off the hull without damaging the vessel’s hull coating, and then capturing the debris for processing and safe disposal ashore,” said ECOsubsea CEO Tor Østervold. “Our decade long collaboration with AkzoNobel gives their customers the ability to plan maintenance with the peace of mind of sustainable collection and disposal of hull biofouling”.

The inclusion of proactive hull cleaning as part of Intertrac HullCare helps to boost savings during the dry-docking cycle. In a further boost to sustainability, all cleaning is aligned to the BIMCO industry standard for hull cleaning – meaning it is conducted using cleaning technology, with reclamation as standard.

John Willsher, Global Account Manager – Marine for AkzoNobel said, “Our Intertrac HullCare system sets new standards for operational efficiencies – delivering more added value and going further than any other system currently on the market. It optimises paint consumption and maintenance while having the lowest environmental footprint of any similar scheme, as well as future-proofing against environmental legislation. That includes the use of reclamation when cleaning which we believe is of particular importance in mitigating the risk of translocation of invasive species. Through Intertrac HullCare we offer the experience, technology and data to maximise a fleet’s operational efficiency, driving forward your carbon neutral journey with uncompromising performance.”

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