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Energy Globe World Award 2019

Winner in the category Air

Automated Hull Treatment
Submitted by:
Hubert Palfinger Technologies GmbH

In the whole world there are around 60,000 trading ships that need to be re-colored every five years. For a long time, the maritime maintenance business has used the same old methods to apply new color to the ships. These methods usually are a burden on the environment. In this innovative Austrian project, this process was automatized which has a lot of advantages. The work safety has improved, cleaning is easier and the amount of colors is reduced by 20% which in turn reduces the costs by almost 50%. CO2 emissions have been reduced by 3%, less fossil fuel is needed and the pollution of the air is also lowered.

Initial situation
For decades, the maritime maintenance business has not seen any developments in the automation of the various work processes for ship/hull maintenance. Shipyards are responsible for high environmental impacts by using manual processes for surface preparation or corrosion/fouling protection. High performance antifouling protection coatings were applied manually and usually in bad quality, causing unnecessary friction which leads to high fuel consumptions of the worldwide merchant fleet.

This new treatment is the first worldwide environmentally friendly and cost optimized automated hull treatment system for maintaining ship hulls. The rotor jet tool is a modern flexible basket mounted tool primarily for working on ship hulls or similar surfaces. In combination with direct vacuuming it ensures eco-friendly rust removal and old coating removal with waste and waste water collection.

For cleaning the ship before the application of the new color now water is used instead of grit dust which is not only better for the workers but also for the environment. The closed loop water system ensures that only as much water as is really needed will be used for the cleaning of the ship. Ground based operation of the color application makes it possible for the workers to stay away from applying the colors themselves, making their work environment safer.

Category Air

  • Project: Automated Hull Treatment
    Applicant: Hubert Palfinger Technologies GmbH
    Country: Austria

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