With an increasing trend for thruster and rudder manufacturers finishing their products with self-cleaning protective hard coatings,Antwerp headquartered Subsea Industries has introduced a filler coating for use with its award-winning Ecoshield hard coat system.
Ecofix, specifically formulated to provide ship repairers and Original Equipment Manufacturers with a cost-effective solution for the repair of corroded or pitted steel surfaces, returns the thruster or rudder to its original state prior to touching up the repaired area with Ecoshield.
Boud Van Rompay, Executive Director of Subsea Industries, said: “We are seeing an increasing number of propulsion and steering equipment suppliers apply tough hard coatings to their equipment for maximum protection against cavitation and abrasion damage, both of which can lead to widespread corrosion if conventional coatings fail.
“When a rudder or other piece of underwater gear has not been properly protected, the surface will become corroded. Cavitation damage can cause severe pitting and the steel needs to be restored to its original shape with a smooth surface prior to recoating.
“This is where Ecofix comes in. It has been developed to repair most pitting or corrosion damage on rudders, stabilizer fins, thrusters and other underwater gear. It’s as tough as the steel itself,” said Van Rompay.
With extraordinary bonding and hardness properties, Ecofix is an effective alternative to metal facing or very expensive fillers. And because it is part of the Ecospeed/Ecoshield family, it is non-toxic and extremely durable.
Since Ecofix uses the same basic resin as Ecoshield, the coating can be applied just one hour after applying the filler.
“Ecoshield is the only coating known to fully protect rudders and thrusters from all cavitation damage for the remainder of a vessel’s service life. Now with the launch of Ecofix, the repair work needed on the underlying steel can be done effectively and economically,” said Van Rompay.
Antwerp-headquartered Subsea Industries, established in 1983, is a pioneer in the development of hard hull coating systems and hull and propeller cleaning systems.
In 2002, after three years’ extensive research and development, the company introduced Ecospeed as an environmentally safe underwater hull coating system, capable of improving ship performance, providing long-term fouling protection and reducing the impact of ship operations on the environment.
Widely considered as an asset rather than a consumable — since one-coat lasts the vessel’s life time and is deemed part of a vessel’s structure, Ecospeed now has more than 700 marine references.
In 2013, after more than ten years of testing, Ecoshield, was launched for permanent protection against cavitation damage for rudders. This development was followed with the market introduction of Ecolock — an extremely tough and durable coating designed for FPSOs, drill ships and other offshore vessels — and then, in 2016, with the introduction of Ecofix, a restoration filler for use in combination with Ecoshield.
Ecospeed is type approved by Lloyd’s Register as an abrasion resistance coating for ice-class ships and has DNV GL approval for use as a coating in ballast water tanks.