Ecoshield remedies rudder cavitation damage for good

Marine Equipment Products and Services, News, Safety and Security, Shiprepair, Technology — By on April 7, 2014 at 9:10 AM

Ecospeed (2)Over the last couple of months a number of vessels have had their rudders coated with Ecoshield. These include a tanker, a ferry, two container vessels and several car carriers. The applications were carried out in Greece, Poland and China and will protect the rudders against cavitation and corrosion damage for the remainder of the vessels’ service lives.

Some of the owners are returning customers, some are new ones, but all of them experienced the same problem: severe cavitation damage on the rudders of their vessels coated with conventional coatings. The returning customers had seen firsthand that Ecoshield solved the problem on their other rudders and wanted the same protection for the rest of their fleet. The new ones saw the excellent result obtained by other owners and chose Ecoshield to prevent corrosion and cavitation damage from reoccurring.

Cavitation tests in a flow channel, carried out in Grenoble, have confirmed that Ecoshield performs extremely well under severe cavitation. The coating will prevent corrosion damage from reoccurring on an existing ship or can protect the rudder(s) of a newbuild vessel against cavitation and corrosion damage for the life of the vessel. It is the only known coating that can provide this type of full protection.

Ecoshield’s flexibility makes it easy to adapt the application to the rest of the activities scheduled at the shipyard or drydock so as not to interfere with these. Overcoating time can be as short as three hours, which means that for smaller surfaces such as rudders or bow thrusters the two coats required can usually be applied in one single day.

Ecoshield is also ideally suited for other areas prone to cavitation erosion or other damage, such as propeller nozzles, thruster tunnels, the bulbous bow or stabilizer fins. For this reason several of the vessels had Ecoshield applied to their thruster tunnels as well as the rudders.

Conclusion
The investment in a coating system that offers full protection from day one is easily won back. This becomes very clear when one takes into account the costs of the temporary underwater repairs and the regular inspections required by a condition of class, not to mention the extra costs associated with rudder repair and recoating in drydock. For this reason a growing group of owners have Ecoshield applied on the rudders of a large part of their fleet or have it included in the rudder specs of their newbuild vessels. These owners invest in the right coating system for protection because they know the long-term savings they will achieve.

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