Marine classification society Lloyd’s Register has confirmed that Wärtsilä’s propeller shaft sealing systems comply with the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) requirements.
Claimed to be the first in the industry, the service level recognition confirms that Wärtsilä Airguard and Wärtsilä Oceanguard systems meet the US EPA’s 2013 revised vessel general permit (VGP) requirements of Part 2.2.9 under normal operating conditions.
The approval from Lloyd’s Register was granted after a desktop review of the product details was conducted to verify whether the seal presented an ‘oil to sea’ interface in normal operation.
During the review, the two Wärtsilä propeller shaft seals were successfully used with mineral oils and a range of environmentally acceptable lubricants as defined within the US EPA VGP 2013.
The seals were also found to be capable of preventing leakage of mineral oils into the sea during normal operating conditions.
With the approval now in place, owners and operators of 79ft-long commercial vessels equipped with Wärtsilä’s seals will not be required to change to an environmentally acceptable lubricant when sailing within US waters.
Ship owners are currently looking for technologically advanced seals, which not only offers them improved lifecycle cost management, but also helps them avoid financial and legislative litigations, in addition to complying with the new regulations.
Demand has also been increasing for high performance seals, such as biodegradable lubricants and completely water-lubricated systems for zero pollution.
Image: Wärtsilä supports the underwater repair and maintenance of a broad portfolio of seal products. Photo: courtesy of Wärtsilä.