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Passenger Ship Technology

Passenger Ship Technology

Data drives coatings for passenger ships

Fri 01 Mar 2019 by Craig Jallal, tankers and markets editor

Data drives coatings for passenger ships
Chugoku Marine Paints’ SEAFLO NEO CF PREMIUM is infused with Selektope (credit: Chugoku Marine Paints]

Coatings are evolving under a new standard and expectations from the passenger ship industry

The ISO 19030 standard is changing the way the coatings sector operates, and delivering potentially huge savings for shipowners in the process.

The ISO 19030 standard consolidates the latest academic and industry knowledge regarding a standardised method to measure the performance of a vessel through the water. As a global standard, shipowners and other interested stakeholders can now apply this for measuring the hull performance of their vessels, said AkzoNobel, the paints and coatings company which was involved in forming the ISO 19030 standard.

Commenting on the value of the standard, AkzoNobel marine coatings business channel manager Michael Hindmarsh said “The standard was originally developed to try and harmonise the way ship performance is monitored. It draws a very good line in the sand. But it is just a start, and already people are talking about making it more accurate and improving it.”

One area where there is scope for improvement is in measuring hull and propeller performance – currently the standard does not differentiate between the two. “There is work to be done in developing methodologies to split the effect of just the propeller or just the hull. That is just the kind of work that we would be involved in,” said Mr Hindmarsh.

As well as helping to further understand the fuel performance of vessels, such a differentiation would save time and money in investigating what is specifically affecting hull performance. “We sometimes get customers saying that their fuel performance is not as good as usual, and they want us to check if the coating is the problem. We will inspect the vessel and often find the problem is not the coating. Therefore, it is in everyone's interest to develop the methods to separate out the effects of hull or propeller, as it will reduce costs and save time,” said Mr Hindmarsh.

AkzoNobel sees a huge opportunity in applying big data to fouling control coating selection and using the ISO 19030 standard to prove the benefits. To this end, it launched its Intertrac Vision system in 2015; this is a predictive tool designed to help ship operators assess the return on investment resulting from a coating specification.

The iPad-based system processes individual vessel data and operational parameters that trained IP personnel enter during a free consultation. Multiple proprietary algorithms and models are then used to provide an accurate assessment of the impact of each potential fouling control coating choice over a ship’s specified in-service period. Outputs include a vessel’s powering requirement, fuel consumption, fuel cost, CO2 emission predictions and a full cost-benefit analysis, comparing different coating options and surface preparation options.

Before ISO 19030, AkzoNobel launched Digital Voyage, a complimentary suite of digital tools that includes Intertrac Perform, a tool that measures and monitors hull-performance data and validates these against the predictions made by Intertrac Vision, using metrics that comply with the ISO 19030 standard on hull- and propeller-performance monitoring.

Part of Digital Voyage, Intertrac Vision Lite has been developed to showcase key features of the full Intertrac Vision tool. Users can input data covering a sample selection of vessel types, fouling routes and generic hull-coating choices to create different coating scenarios. They can then compare variations in the effect on power requirements, fuel costs and CO2 emissions.

Managing onboard paint

As a Norwegian company, Jotun will be painting the town red at the giant shipping industry event in Oslo, Nor-Shipping. Speaking ahead of the event, Jotun’s chief executive Morten Fon spoke about the technological changes brought about by ISO 19030. He noted that Jotun’s Hull Performance Solutions (HPS) offering combines premium SeaQuantum anti-fouling coatings with a suite of sensors to measure long-term performance in accordance with ISO 19030.

This provides documented proof of HPS’ ability to maintain a clean hull (with a high performance guarantee promising minimal hull speed loss – under 1.5% – over standard drydocking periods) delivering increased fuel efficiency and consumption. For shipowners this translates to lower opex and CO2 emissions.

Mr Fon referenced the launch of Jotun’s SeaStock Management Solutions in 2018 as a further step forward. This effectively allows Jotun to take on the management of all onboard paint maintenance –including condition surveys, ordering, logistics, and much more – to ensure predictability, optimal quality and protection, and hassle free administration.

He explained “It allows our customers to focus on what they do best, running their fleets, while we focus on what we do best – protecting people and property with world-leading solutions. It’s simple, efficient and helps bring us closer, increasing understanding and performance. That’s something we can all benefit from.”

That spirit of increased collaboration will be key in the future, Mr Fon believes, both for maritime and the broader ocean space.

“Data is a key issue,” he stated. “Access to data will allow us to provide better solutions, while sharing data across relevant platforms will help the industry in general push for optimised performance, efficiency and regulatory compliance. Greater transparency will help give us all the ability to navigate what, in the past, has been an unpredictable industry. That’s crucial.”

Boosting coating strength

In 2019, Hempel launched a powerful biocide package and proven binder system. Atlantic+ is said to ensure progressive and controlled self-polishing from the moment the hull hits the water and for up to 60 months thereafter. The new coating is reinforced with Hempel’s patented microfibre technology at a higher level of the company’s strongest cargo hold coating – Hempadur Ultra Strength Fibre.

Hempel said the science behind the microfibre technology involves introducing an internal skeleton of fibres into the paint to enhance its mechanical strength – in the same way that steel rods can be inserted into concrete to reinforce a physical structure. Strengthening the antifouling coating in this way means ensuring protection from fouling on areas exposed to impact and abrasion; improving overcoatibility; reducing the areas to blast; and ultimately decreasing the costs for the ship’s drydocking. 

Hempel has also launched Actiguard. Hempel’s group segment manager Andreas Glud explained the new coating technology.

“Passenger ships spend more time in port, slow steaming and sitting idle. Cruise ships in particular tend to operate in warmer waters which encourage fouling; or move between warm and cooler waters across vast geographical expanses, which is highly problematic in terms of the transfer of marine organisms between different ecosystems,” he said. All these factors combine to create a haven for fouling organisms to attach to a vessel’s hull, significantly increasing fuel consumption and associated CO2 emissions.

He said that one leading cruise ship operator has estimated that hull fouling can add US$5M in fuel costs over the five-year docking interval due to the resistance created by the fouling. So, for them investing in a high-performance hull coating from the outset is always the right step in protecting their cruise ships, minimising fuel consumption and maximising efficiency savings across their business.

Actiguard is the foundation central to Hempel’s fouling defence coating Hempaguard, which is ideally suited to the unique trading operations of passenger ships. Mr Glud said this retains its effectiveness regardless of speed and during idle periods of up to 120 days, as well as delivering a maximum speed loss of 1.4%.

Coatings for ice-class

Warm water fouling is not a problem for the expedition cruise ships nosing their way through the ice floes of the polar regions. Here, a physically more resistant hull coating is required. PPG Protective and Marine Coatings has been working with the commercial shipping fleet, including the crude oil and gas tankers working in the Russian arctic water. PPG has produced a solution that could be applied locally and was resilient enough for severe ice conditions.

PPG’s Sigmashield 1200 coating provides protection from the impact of ice abrasion and accretion. Based on a very hard filler composition, the coating’s anti-abrasion properties are built on a highly cross-linked phenolic epoxy technology, further extending the service life of the coating by increasing ‘creep resistance’. This coating can also be applied by cold, single-feed airless spray equipment.

PPG said “It has a track record in protecting ice-going vessels, offering easy application as well as maximum abrasion resistance and damage propagation control against ice hazards on the hull's outer shell coating.”

A subsequent diving survey of the ice-class commercial vessels after operation in ice-going conditions showed there was no damage on the coated vertical sides of the hulls as a result of ice impact.

No matter what the type of paint used in whatever part of the globe, one of the main elements in the cost of coatings is application. Not only is there the cost of the paint itself, the lack of income while the vessel is in drydock is a major factor. Which is why French shipyard Chantier Naval de Marseille (CNdM) is promoting a paint spraying robot available at is its Marseille-based shipyard. The robot is capable of cleaning and spraying a hull in a fraction of the time of the manual process and it is much safer for the operatives. It will also save owners money.

“The paint saving is between 20% and 30% and you can save three to four days in drydock time” said CNdM commercial manager Manalo Cavaliere.


Carnival: collecting coatings data

Patch tests are one of the ways Carnival collects coating performance data, said Carnival Corporation’s vice president of corporate marine technology Chris Millman, whose role includes monitoring the drydock dates and coating performance of the ships in the Carnival brands.

He told Passenger Ship Technology “We carefully and constantly monitor hull performance on all of our vessels, utilising a number of proprietary systems to detect any fouling impact. This early detection allows us to intervene with hull cleaning at the appropriate times. We polish our propellers at least once every six months to maintain performance, and normally, we have a hull inspection at the same time – meaning that the hull is inspected at least twice a year. We are also trialling our own ROVs for hull inspection.”

Carnival must balance availability and efficiency. “The method of hull cleaning depends upon the ship location and the locally available technology. Where it is available to us, we prefer to use hull cleaning robots that also collect the fouling debris, and we are seeing an expansion of the locations in which this technology is now being offered,” he said.

Carnival cruise ship Carnival Horizon is testing a Selektope-infused coating. According to Chugoku Marine Paints the vessel is sailing with a full coat of the antifouling product SEAFLO NEO CF PREMIUM.


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