Greek ballast water management system (BWMS) maker Erma First has received US Coast Guard (USCG) type-approval for one of its two treatment systems, the Erma First BWTS Fit. “The day we’ve been waiting for has arrived,” its marketing and communications executive Irene Vitsara said today (19 October), after its certificate was issued yesterday, five months after submitting its application.
The technology passes ballast water through a 40 ìm filter before passing it through an electrolytic cell in which free chlorine at a concentration of 4-6 mg/l is produced, making this system the first full-flow electrolysis system to receive USCG type-approval, the company reported in a statement. It also reported that, by using an active substance produced by electrolysis, “any danger for regrowth of microorganisms is eliminated.”
Its other system, known as Erma First, uses a finer filter and a higher chlorine concentration; BWTT is seeking clarification over that version’s journey towards USCG type-approval.
Erma First’s managing director Konstantinos Stampedakis believes that securing type-approval demonstrates the company’s “capability to undertake and successfully complete challenging projects,” he said in today’s statement. Business development manager Helen Polychronopoulou said that it proves “the efficient operation and high quality of our systems.”
Ms Polychronopoulou stressed that the units used during the USCG type-approval process were the same as those the company has made since its inception and “no modifications [have been] made to the units already delivered to clients nor will be made to those to follow.”
Erma Fist BWTS Fit has a capacity range of 50-3,740 m3/hr and is suitable for ships of all types and sizes, the company’s statement said. It reported references from shipowners and yards in Greece, China, Italy, Turkey, Romania, Japan, Korea, US, Denmark, the UK and Germany.
• The USCG type-approval certificate lists these operational limitations:
Salinity: Not applicable
Temperature: Not applicable
Hold time: Not applicable
Electrolyte feed temperature: >-2°C
Electrolyte feed salinity: 0.9 PSU
Filter inlet pressure: 1.6 bar
Total residual oxidant: 6 mg/l
The Erma First Fit model meets the requirements of 46 CFR 111.105 and may be installed in hazardous locations on a US flag vessel. The control board and transformer/rectifier must remain outside of hazardous locations. The BWMS may be installed in hazardous locations on a foreign flag vessel subject to approval of the foreign administration. The BWMS must be marked in accordance with 46 CFR 162.060-22.