With fuel costs amounting to 40% of operational expenses and continuing to rise, reducing fuel consumption is a vital concern of shipowners. This is the reason why hull monitoring and maintenance pays for itself. Underwater hull roughness, marine fouling, bent propellers and poor paint condition are all factors that will increase fuel usage due to the drag or inefficiency created by the damaged or affected area.
Building upon conventional technical skills and know-how while also taking advantage of the latest technology, Hydrex offers a unique hull monitoring service to its customers. This gives shipowners/operators total control of their ship's hull condition and consequently its performance, with only a minimum of work on their part.
Many ships sail with a chartering contract that includes a penalty clause if fixed distance/fuel consumption ratios are not met. However, the distance/fuel ratio is unpredictable with regular paint systems and will also worsen over the years. This is due to wear-down, uneven build-up of paint layers, corrosion and other damage which reduces the vessel's performance and increases fuel consumption. In this way the ship becomes more expensive and profits are reduced.
The Ecospeed underwater hull coating system keeps the ship's performance stable and protects the owner's investment. A fixed distance/fuel ratio can be determined in advance and penalties are therefore avoided.
Because Ecospeed creates a smooth surface on the hull, the coating helps the ships glide more easily through the water. Since the engines do not have to be pushed as hard to get from one place to the next, several cruise vessels coated with Ecospeed have demonstrated that they can actually run with reduced propulsion power. This helps to both save energy and conserve fuel.
When using conventional paints, a vessel's AHR (average hull roughness) will gradually increase as a result of the buildup of paint layers and the general deterioration of the paint system, causing increased fuel consumption. Whereas other coating schemes such as anti-fouling or silicone paints deteriorate substantially in between drydockings and the maintenance of them is limited to drydock only, the highly durable Ecospeed coating offers long-term fuel efficiency.
Ecospeed makes further maintenance of the underwater hull very easy, whether in-water or dry. Maintenance procedures can be repeated whenever needed during the vessel’s lifespan without causing damage to or deterioration in the quality of the coating’s surface and even significantly improving the coating’s hydrodynamic characteristics on each occasion. This will prevent any increase in fuel consumption over the years as would happen with more traditional paint systems, and will keep the hull as hydrodynamically smooth as possible, bringing about a major saving in fuel. (More information on the benefits of underwater cleaning of Ecospeed can be found on this page.)
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