Antifouling fuel saving ability tested

'SNS 203' SNS 203 after being coated with RENOLIT DOLPHIN. Image: RENOLIT
Industry Database

A French sea rescue organisation will test an environmentally friendly fouling release film in extreme Atlantic conditions with the aim of significantly cutting fuel consumption in its vessels.

One of not-for-profit Société Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer’s (SNSM) 12m long rescue vessels has been coated with the biocide-free fouling release film RENOLIT DOLPHIN S in preparation for the one-year test.

Use of the film means fouling organisms have difficulty attaching to the hull and are washed-off when the boat is moving faster than approximately 7 knots. The hull’s surface remains smooth, which reduces flow resistance and fuel consumption.

Extreme conditions

In addition to reducing fuel consumption and saving energy, the weathering resistance of the film, based on a high-quality silicone layer, is important to SNSM because hulls are subject to extreme conditions along the coastline of Brittany, especially in winter. Furthermore, the rescue organisation wants to set an example for environmental protection with the eco-friendly film, as legal requirements in French coastal waters are very high.

As the average life-expectancy of RENOLIT’s Fouling Release Film is five years, SNSM is hoping that its vessels will have to spend less time in dry-dock, boosting their operational availability. As the boats are in constant use, they have to be easy to clean.

The test at the location of Pornichet, near Saint-Nazaire in Brittany is being monitored by the SNSM’s National Technical Department and will involve the performance parameters of the film on the hull being routinely checked by divers.

By Rebecca Jeffrey

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