Skip to main content



Monday, July 26, 2021 

Ballast water equipment manufacturer Erma First is bringing what it says is the world’s smallest and easiest to install ballast water management system (BWMS) to the international market through its acquisition of US company oneTANK.

oneTANK, a subsidiary of naval architecture and marine engineering firm Glosten, has developed a small scale innovative, low-cost, IMO Revised G8 Code and US Coast Guard compliant system. Based on a patented mixing technology developed by the US Geological Survey (USGS), the system can be installed in larger vessels’ aftpeak tanks. It is also suitable for use onboard workboats, tugs, semi-submersibles, fishing vessels and superyachts. The technology is being adopted on ships in aftpeak tanks within Overseas Shipholding Group’s tanker fleet and on the dredger MV Charlock in the Netherlands.

Erma First is now expanding its portfolio to provide a wider variety of onboard solutions to a larger market. The move follows its recent acquisition of German water treatment specialist RWO GmbH in May 2021, METIS Cyberspace Technology in 2019 and positions ERMA FIRST as a major provider of environmental protection systems.

Erma First MD Konstantinos Stampedakis said: “This is a game-changing ballast water treatment technology. It is compact, simple-to-use, and fully automated. It delivers a quick to install additional solution for small ballast tanks on big ships as well as a stand-alone solution for small vessels such as yachts, tugs and offshore support vessels. To win the battle against invasive marine species and effectively protect our vulnerable marine eco-systems, ballast water from internationally trading smaller vessels also needs treating in a way which is practical and economically viable. We believe that we have this solution in the form of oneTANK, a product which keeps it simple.”

oneTANK MD Kevin Reynolds said: “In Erma First we’ve found the perfect partner to take our innovation to the next level. Over the past 10 years they have been hugely successful in introducing their own large electro-chlorination system to the global merchant fleet; they have a commitment to research & development and crucially they have the financial resources required to market this product internationally. We are excited to see our product go global.”

oneTANK treats ballast water within the vessel’s ballast tank and has no filters, ultra-violet lamps or electrolytic chlorine generators. Its footprint is 600mm x 600mm, half the size of its nearest competitor. With low-running costs and full regulatory compliance, oneTANK provides a BWMS which works in all water qualities and salinities.

The system uses an 8.25% or 12.5% sodium hypochlorite (bleach) and 30% sodium thiosulfate solution – readily available chemicals that can be purchased from suppliers worldwide. Application is practical for smaller vessels as a 20-litre container of 12.5% bleach will treat about 288m3 of ballast water.  For larger vessels, oneTANK can treat tanks as large as 4,000m3. Seawater is automatically treated by applying and mixing the bulk chemicals in-tank, allowing users to treat on their own schedules, avoiding busy in-port times.

Reader Comments (0)

There are currently no comments on this article. Why not be the first and leave your thoughts below.

Leave Your Comment

Please keep your comment on topic, any inappropriate comments may be removed.

Return to index