Sydney based Inco Ships Pty Ltd. were the very first company to apply the revolutionary, fluoropolymer foul release coating, Intersleek 900 to their vessel ‘Ikuna’ during a routine maintenance drydocking in March 2006 at Singapore’s Sembawang shipyard.
Previously coated with a standard, biocidal SPC (Self Polishing Copolymer) antifouling, the typical speed of the self-discharging bulk carrier was around 10.5 knots. After fully blasting the underwater hull and applying Intersleek 900, Inco Ships found that the average speed of the ‘Ikuna’ had increased by 1 knot. This 10% increase in speed has been achieved without an increase in fuel consumption and effectively means one free trip for every ten trips undertaken.
Speaking following a routine dive inspection of the ‘Ikuna’ after 37 months in-service, Mr. Andrew Dally, Managing Director of Inco Ships Pty Ltd. said, “We are very pleased with the Intersleek 900 system. The vessel is definitely doing 1 knot faster which was not achievable any time leading up to the docking but without the associated fuel consumption required for this higher speed. This increase in available speed and vessel efficiency is a significant benefit to us commercially”.
Commenting upon the antifouling performance of Intersleek 900 after three years trading in Australasian waters, Mr. Dally says, “The hull was clear of any animal or weed fouling growth with the exception of the sacrificial anodes which were covered with marine organisms thereby indicating the high level of fouling faced by the vessel”.
Since coating the ‘Ikuna’ with Intersleek 900, Inco Ships Pty Ltd. have also coated the ‘Goliath’ (a 15,539 DWT cement carrier) and the ‘Torrens’ (a 4,649 DWT livestock carrier) in October 2008 and December 2008 respectively.