At the end of January the application of newbuild m/s Eeva VG with Ecospeed was finalized. The vessel is the first of two very energy efficient dry cargo carriers managed by VG-Shipping. They will operate in the Baltic region.
Both ships are VG EcoCoasters. They are owned by Meriaura Group of which VG-shipping is a part. The vessels were designed as a new ship concept by Meriaura together with its partners Foreship Ltd andAker Arctic Technology Inc.
VG EcoCoasters are designed to cause considerably less environmental impact than conventional dry cargo vessels. The hull and machinery of the newbuildings are optimized to the speed of 10, 5 knots in open water conditions. Power required for Ice Class 1A is achieved by a diesel electric driven booster unit. The aim is to almost halve the fuel consumption compared to conventional dry cargo vessels of similar type and size, and therefore also cut emissions remarkably. The ships are capable of using alternative biofuels produced in VG-Shipping’s own refinery located in Uusikaupunki, Finland. The new vessels will meet all the maritime environmental regulations coming into force in the next few years and in many cases will even exceed them.
Meriaura Group has entered into a contract with Dutch shipyard Royal Bodewes for the building of the vessels. M/s Eeva VG was launched on February 5th and has a planned delivery at the end of July. The second vessel is expected to follow in the autumn of 2016. Application of Ecospeed on this vessel is already well in progress.
An energy efficient coating for an energy efficient vessel
These vessels were designed with a substantial reduction of fuel consumption as well as emissions in mind. It was therefore essential that they were protected with a lasting coating system that would help the owners achieve their ecological goals instead of working against them.
Ecospeed is an 100% environmentally safe ship hull coating system which in itself is already a very important benefit for a company like the Meriaura Group that clearly take their ecological responsibilities seriously and try to make a difference.
However, Ecospeed ties in even better with the design of the VG EcoCoasters. The coating system improves a ship’s performance while at the same time providing lasting protection. It consists of a unique, entirely original and thoroughly proven system that combines the advantages of an easy-to-apply superior coating, a surface treatment for hydrodynamic optimization and a long term underwater maintenance service system.
One of the many unique factors of this underwater hull coating system is that with repeated underwater hull cleaning, the coating’s surface aspect does not degrade but gradually improves. This procedure is made easy by the coating’s technical properties. Cleaning can be carried out whenever needed, at any point in its lifespan, without causing damage.
One major cruise line has been quoted as saying that they are saving 20% on fuel costs with Ecospeed compared to the earlier TBT coating which they replaced. Another owner found that they gained 3 knots over sea trials speed when they replaced their hull coating with Ecospeed.
With both innovative vessels expected to be ready for operation before the end of the year, the Meriaura Group will very soon start to make a difference on the shipping industry. We at Subsea Industries have been pursuing a similar goal since 2000 and are proud to be a part of this project.