Hempel Signs Conversion Contract with Vale

By MarEx 2011-07-07 15:28:23

Hempel recently signed a contract with Brazilian mining giant Vale, the world’s largest iron ore producer, to supply coatings for a five-vessel conversion project. The Hempel fouling release coating HEMPASIL X3, will help Vale reduce its vessel maintenance costs, fuel consumption and green house gas and biocide emissions.

Danish-based Hempel will supply 150,000 litres of its third generation fouling release, HEMPASIL X3, or advanced tin-free antifoulings for Vale’s forthcoming five-vessel conversion project.

Five of Vale’s Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs) will be converted to Very Large Ore Carriers (VLOCs) at the Yulian Shipyard and at the Huraung Dan Dong
Shipyard in China.

Hempel has been working closely with Vale, who plans to extend its fleet of ships to 50 by the end of 2013.

“The shipping industry is facing increasing pressure from governments and   legislative authorities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” says Torben Rasmussen, Group Product Manager, Hempel A/S. “In response, many shipowners have set their own environmental targets in an effort to reduce CO2 emissions. But, finding effective ways to meet these targets can be a challenge, and that’s where Hempel’s complete fouling control concept can help.”

“Minimising maintenance, as well as maintaining a smooth hull during the entire service period is vital for the efficient operation of our vessels, and we believe the HEMPASIL X3 system will help us to achieve this,” says Nelson Coelho, General Manager, Vale. “We’re also confident that the smoother topcoat will help reduce fuel consumption and in turn reduce carbon emissions. This will also help us reduce the amount of biocides released into the sea and make our operations even more environmentally friendly.”

Streamlined conversion process

At the previous drydocking, the five VLCCs were coated with a standard fouling release silicone product. During the current conversion, HEMPASIL NEXUS X TEND, a special tiecoat for repair and touch-up, will be an integrated part of the new paint system.

“NEXUS X-TEND makes using HEMPASIL X3 as simple as using a conventional antifouling coating,” says Torben Rasmussen. “In the past, spot repair was time consuming and complex and often led to substandard results, such as poor adhesion between coats. But NEXUS X-TEND reduces the number of steps in the repair and touch-up process of damaged areas, making it easier to paint over an old fouling release coating and thereby speed up the drydock process.”