K-ROV has received approval from Australia’s Port of Townsville to use HullWiper’s underwater hull-cleaning technology on the vessels calling at the port.
The technology involves a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) that is designed to offer cost-efficient and eco-friendly hull cleaning services for all kinds of vessels calling at Townsville.
The HullWiper ROV complies with Australia’s strict biofouling management standards, which aim to protect the spread of invasive marine species through ships’ hull.
It uses adjustable seawater jets under variable pressure as the means of cleaning, instead of brushes or abrasives, to reduce the risk of damaging the anti-fouling coatings.
The ROV will allow ship owners and operators to remove fouling from their ship’s hulls, as well as achieve maximum performance and energy efficiency savings and avoid the cost of recoating in case of damage.
The technology also eliminates the use of divers, posing no threat to human life. It can be used through day and night, as well as in most weather conditions without affecting cargo operations.
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In contrast with traditional methods, HullWiper does not discharge removed residues and harmful materials into the sea, but accumulates them with an on-board filter to lower the risk of cross-pollination of waters with alien species.
HullWiper managing director Simon Doran said: “Townsville is located at the centre of the Great Barrier Reef, an area of considerable ecological sensitivity and the first line of defence against unwelcome foreign species.
“Our ROV captures marine fouling on a ship’s hull for ecologically approved disposal onshore, in line with local and regional environmental regulations.”
The HullWiper ROV can also help fight fouling and reduce greenhouse emissions in the Great Barrier Reef.
It was launched in Dubai, UAE, in 2013, and is currently used in ports in Sweden, Singapore, Spain, Netherlands, Norway, Egypt, and other locations.