With its calm waters and strategic location at the tip of the Malay peninsula, Singapore has thrived as a trading depot and port where ships can refit and take on fuel, known as bunkering. The locally-owned barges that move from vessel to vessel replenishing them with fuel are vital to the port’s function. However, those ships, with their slow steaming speeds and hours spent idled next to their customers, are prime targets to accumulate organisms such as barnacles on their hulls, a process known as fouling.
To combat the fouling and the additional fuel costs it causes due to drag, Singapore’s New Maritime Pte Ltd is turning to AkzoNobel’s Intersleek 1100SR for its bunkering vessel Zafar. The Zafar plies the waters of the Singapore Strait and those warm waters aid the collection of fouling micro-organisms, called “slime” in maritime parlance. Intersleek 1100SR relies on patented fluoropolymer technology to repel the slime from adhering to the hull by attacking the chemical reactions that allow it to stick to the surface. The slime that does accumulate during stationary periods is lifted away from the hull by water resistance.
Intersleek’s value is in its longevity. As AkzoNobel’s Andrew Tan points out, “Intersleek does not contain biocides, it has high volume solids, and low VOC. It is an excellent product choice for vessels with long static periods such as crane barge and harbor tugs that are interested in an easy clean concept.”
Tan continues to explain “The Intersleek system has been used on our customers’ tugs in Singapore for over 11 years. It has a good track record for its easy clean properties and has shown excellent results on tugs traveling within Singapore tropical waters. Our customers’ 40 meter tugs spent approximately 2 days instead of 6 days in dock and required as little as 40 liters of Intersleek 1100SR for touch up during subsequent dockings. It can provide protection for as long as the coating is in good condition. Our longest record of a tug only requiring touch up during a dry dock is 11 years and the vessel is still performing well. And companies such as New Maritime are also aware of the dry dock, blasting, labour, and material savings they can accrue by using the product for easy clean, touch up and go during dry docking,” said Tan.
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