The technology group Wärtsilä has recently been awarded contracts to supply its Aquarius UV ballast water management system (BWMS) to global shipping operators.
The systems will enable the vessels to comply with the Ballast Water Management Convention regulations that entered into force in September 2017 for all newbuild vessels.
The contracts cover 13 systems, which were ordered in Q4 2018.
The work is being carried out for ships being built at yards in China. The orders cover installations in a roro ferry, two ropax, six tankers and four container vessels.
In addition to the demand for newbuild vessel installations, shipowners are also increasingly requesting quotations for their existing sailing fleet.
For a vessel to be compliant with the IMO's Ballast Water Management Convention, owners have to install a BWMS at the next special survey of the vessel after 8 September 2019.
This essentially gives a five-year window for retrofits between September 2019 and September 2024, depending on when the special survey is due.
“This continued strong demand is a very positive verification of the efficiency, reliability, and robustness of the Wärtsilä Aquarius systems. Owners around the world recognise the fact that our BWMS solutions, which are backed by Wärtsilä’s extensive global service support network, provide assurance that their vessels can fully comply with the regulations, even with varying levels of water quality,” said Wärtsilä Marine director, water and waste Arto Lehtinen.
The Wärtsilä Aquarius UV (Ultra-Violet) BWMS has successfully completed all the required testing procedures and has been submitted for US Coast Guard (USCG) type-approval.
This follows the IMO type-approval for the Aquarius UV system, granted in 2012. The USCG approval process is extensive and involves both land and sea testing.
The company’s alternative BWMS technology, the Wärtsilä Aquarius EC (Electro-Chlorination), was granted USCG type-approval in August 2018, and IMO type-approval in 2013.
The Ballast Water Management Convention aims to prevent the spread of harmful aquatic organisms from one region to another, and halt damage to the marine environment from ballast water discharge.
The planning required for fitting a ballast water treatment system is a topic at the Asian Tanker Conference on 26 and 27 February.