Japanese shipping firm Mitsui OSK Lines has announced it will install a ballast water treatment system (BWTS) on a very large crude carrier (VLCC) for the first time, meeting new International Maritime Organization (IMO) requirements.
The installation of the JFE BallastAce, developed by JFE Engineering, which will be carried out when the vessel is docked from March to April 2013, will be the first installation of its type by any Japanese ship owner on an existing VLCC.
Ocean-going ships take on ballast water to maintain balance when sailing without cargo and the JFE BallastAce helps to remove aquatic organisms and bacteria in ballast water, using a composite process that includes filter elements, chemical agents and Venturi tubes.
The system is used to control the levels of marine microorganisms and other harmful materials in ship ballast water to certain standards.
According to IMO convention, all vessels subject to its requirements must control the levels of aquatic organisms contained in ballast water to the D-2 discharge standard.
The IMO ballast water convention will come into force after ratification by 30 states representing 35% of the global fleet; the IMO wants all vessels to install the ballast treatment systems to protect marine environments.
The Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK) VLCC has a length of 333m, breadth of 60m and deadweight of around 300,000t.