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HHI and HMM to utilise Jotun’s robotic hull cleaning to unlock green benefits

Photo: Jotun Jotun PR.jpg
Shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) has reached an agreement with shipowner HMM and coatings firm Jotun to utilise robots for hull cleaning.

Jotun will utilise its Hull Skating Solutions (HSS) on a series of 16,000 teu newbuilding boxships at HHI built for HMM.

The HSS will be applied to ensure the ships meet environmental key performance indicators, maintain clean hulls and pristine coatings, gain optimal efficiency and limit any potential release of biocides.

The HSS consists of a unique HullSkater, which adheres to vessels and gently removes all biofouling for an ‘always clean’ hull, the specially developed SeaQuantum Skate antifouling, and proactive condition monitoring utilising a proprietary big data algorithm tailored to individual vessel needs.

The HullSkater will move from hull to hull during key outfitting stages.

“HSS cleans hulls before biofouling takes hold, eliminating associated drag and fuel consumption and emissions, while protecting the vessel coatings, and safeguarding ecosystems from the potentially invasive species that look to populate them. Biofouling is a particular problem when vessels are idle for long periods, such as during outfitting, and this can cause major issues when trialling initial performance before delivery,” explained Geir Axel Oftedahl, business development director of Jotun.

Choi Jong-chul, executive vice president of HMM, commented: “HMM is committed to building a fleet that is defined by sustainable innovation, enabling us to hit our ambitious target of achieving zero CO2 emissions by 2050. We aim to be proactive in identifying, adopting and developing the best solutions, and Jotun’s approach to hull cleaning is the perfect fit for that strategy.”

Ahn Oh-min, executive vice president of HHI, said: “It’ll be very interesting to watch the HullSkater solving the biofouling problem once and for all. We believe this development can significantly contribute to a paradigm shift in the marine coatings market in the future.”

The HSS’ unique robotic cleaning units are controlled by specialist Jotun operatives via 4G connections. The Norwegian-headquartered company estimates that if all ships facing severe biofouling challenges adopted the proactive HSS approach, maritime CO2 emissions could be reduced by at least 40 million tonnes per year.

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