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Tuesday, September 8, 2020 

Jotun has signed the first commercial contract for container vessels with its Jotun Hull Skating Solution (HSS), with global container shipping company Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC).

MSC is committed to investing in decarbonisation, and will install the Jotun HullSkater, the first robotic system designed for proactive cleaning, and the specially developed high performance SeaQuantum Skate antifouling as parts of the solution, on the 14,000 TEU MSC Eva later this year. The solution will then proactively work to achieve an 'always clean' vessel hull, with no biofouling, optimised efficiency, reduced fuel costs and lower CO₂ emissions.

Jotun says the HSS is designed to help shipowners facing severe biofouling challenges, combining the antifouling and the robotic proactive cleaner, housed onboard the chosen vessel, with condition monitoring, technical service and performance and service level guarantees. Jotun operators control the HullSkater via a 4G connection, conducting cleaning and inspections in line with individual vessel schedules developed through a proprietary algorithm and big data.

Alberto Genovesi , Marine Global Key Account Manager, Performance Coatings, Jotun said: “MSC is not only a market leader, but it is also leading the way in terms of exploring innovative new solutions to meet the IMO’s goals of decarbonising shipping. We have worked with them as a partner to provide premium anti-fouling coatings to their advanced fleet over many years and knew that HSS would chime with their ambitions to deliver both improved environmental performance and enhanced efficiency and cost control for business stakeholders. HSS is a clear win-win in that respect.”

MSC Eva will install HSS at GWD Guangzhou Shipyard in China during a docking for class renewal and scrubber installation. The vessel’s flexible sailing pattern, with exposure to differing water temperatures and environments, leads to its severe biofouling challenge. Jotun believes that if all ships facing such challenges adopted the HSS proactive approach – cleaning hulls before biofouling takes hold and therefore eliminating associated drag and fuel consumption – maritime CO₂ emissions could be reduced by at least 40 million tons per year.

Giuseppe Gargiulo, Head of Newbuildings, MSC, said: “We are acutely aware that the shipping industry needs to adopt innovative solutions to meet ambitious environmental goals. We believe HSS will help solve the problem of biofouling, equating to strong benefits for the natural world – through reduced emissions and decreased spread of invasive species – and better results for our business, customers and society. This is the embodiment of what we’re looking to achieve at MSC. Clean hulls are only one piece of the jigsaw when it comes to delivering a more sustainable shipping industry, but a central piece nonetheless. MSC is committed to exploring and trialling new scalable solutions to minimise overall environmental impact, for both our business and the shipping industry as a whole.”

HSS has been developed over several years and brought to market by Jotun in cooperation with Kongsberg. Comprehensive testing has been taking place on vessels, in partnership with shipowners and selected ports. The Jotun HullSkater utilises magnetic wheels to cling to vessel hulls, and works to remove individual bacteria and biofilm without damage, before macro-fouling grows. This permits unlimited idle days for shipowners while minimising the need for reactive cleaning, cutting costs, environmental risk and optimising fleet flexibility.

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