With the ballast water regulations now requiring all new builds to be fitted with ballast treatment systems, technology group Wärtsilä has recently been awarded a number of contracts to supply its Aquarius UV systems to global shipping operators. The contracts cover in total 13 systems, the orders for which were all booked in quarter four 2018.
The work is being carried out for ships being built at yards in China. The orders cover installations in a RoRo ferry, two RoPax, six tankers and four container vessels. In addition to the demand for new build vessel installations, ship owners are also increasingly requesting quotations for their existing sailing fleet. For a vessel to be compliant with the IMO's Ballast Water Management Convention, owners have to install a BWMS at the next IOPP survey of the vessel after 8 September 2019. This essentially gives a five-year window for retrofits between September 2019 and September 2024, depending on when the IOPP survey is due.
“This continued strong demand is a very positive verification of the efficiency, reliability, and robustness of the Wärtsilä Aquarius systems. Owners around the world recognise the fact that our BWMS solutions, which are backed by Wärtsilä’s extensive global service support network, provide assurance that their vessels can fully comply with the regulations, even with varying levels of water quality,” said Arto Lehtinen, Director, Water and Waste, Wärtsilä Marine.
The Wärtsilä Aquarius UV (Ultra-Violet) BWMS has successfully completed all the required testing procedures and has been submitted for USCG type-approval. This follows the IMO type-approval for the Aquarius UV system, which was granted in 2012. The USCG approval process is extensive and involves both land and sea testing. The company’s alternative BWMS technology, the Wärtsilä Aquarius EC (Electro-Chlorination), was granted USCG type-approval in August 2018, and IMO type-approval in 2013.
Wärtsilä told ShipInsight that as part of the product development road map, it is underway with obtaining IMO type-approval to the revised 2016 G8 process for both products and expects this will be achieved safely within 2019. Only systems with the revised type-approval can be installed after 28 October 2020.