Demand for innovative, sustainable and green technology is on the rise within the international maritime community. Stricter regulations aimed at controlling the harmful effects of invasive aquatic species (IAS) that hitch a ride on cruise liner hulls, the need to reduce CO2 emissions and to mitigate the harmful environmental impact of heavy metals in paints are being taken on board by ports and governments around the world.
The need for an environmentally friendly and cost-effective ship hull cleaning solution is met by HullWiper’s unique diver and brush free cleaning technology using the HullWiper Ltd Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV). Designed after consultation with ship owners and operators, and at start up in line with Norwegian offshore standards, HullWiper is the only operational ROV that offers a unique onboard filtration system to safely capture removed biofouling from vessel hulls.
HullWiper’s innovative and sustainable hull cleaning system uses adjustable high-pressure seawater to dislodge waste materials, and remove fouling and IAS without scrubbing, harsh chemicals or abrasives employed in traditional methods. Unlike traditional brush cleaning, HullWiper leaves expensive antifouling surfaces intact and does not harm the delicate marine environment.
HullWiper does not discharge removed biofouling into the sea. Captured residues are pumped into an onboard filter unit and deposited into dedicated drums onshore for safe removal by a locally-approved environmental waste company. As no divers are involved, cleaning can be done day or night, regardless of light and temperature conditions, and whilst the cruise liner’s operations are underway. The resulting clean hull can improve ship speed and support significant savings on fuel consumption (up to 40%) per voyage.
The effectiveness of HullWiper’s filter system in purifying the wastewater collected has been verified by AMT Environmental, an environmental analysis and consulting professional.
All our global operations are in line with International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) and International Maritime Organization (IMO) guidelines and carried out in accordance with local legislation. HullWiper is an active member and participant in regulatory bodies such as the Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO) and the National Association of Corrosion Engineers International (NACE International). HullWiper is one of four founding members of the IMO’s Global Industry Alliance (GIA) for Marine Biosafety.
Since its launch in late 2013, HullWiper has expanded from its first base in Dubai to key locations across the Middle East, as well as ports in Sweden, Gibraltar, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Australia, Mauritius, Guinea and Panama. HullWiper is available for lease where the company does not have its own base. To date, HullWiper has performed hull cleans for more than 1,500 vessels worldwide.
HullWiper’s online calculator enables cruise liner owners and operators to compare the financial benefits of hull cleaning with the HullWiper compared to traditional methods such as divers with brushes. It factors in size, speed, voyage, fuel type, temperature and anti-fouling coating used for a range of vessels including bulk carriers, container ships, LNG/LPG vessels and tankers. It also takes into consideration the hidden costs of divers using brushes or other abrasives.
HullWiper’s Onboard Solution has also been introduced, adding greater flexibility to the provision of cost-effective and ecologically friendly hull cleaning effectively enabling cruise vessels to remove fouling on demand. Proactive cleaning helps minimise the spread of IAS and ensures lower CO2 emissions. Cruise liners on a tight schedule can perform a partial or full hull clean on a planned rotation without interruption to timetables or inconvenience to passengers. The ROV can be included in the design phase for newbuilds by way of an on-deck solution, door or hatch in the side of the hull or through a futuristic moon pool.
The HullWiper ROV provides cruise owners and operators with a cleaning solution that enables them to meet their responsibilities for protecting the marine environment without disrupting their business.