Navigation Links
Non-toxic hull coating resists barnacles, may save ship owners millions
Date:5/28/2009

North Carolina State University engineers have created a non-toxic "wrinkled" coating for use on ship hulls that resisted buildup of troublesome barnacles during 18 months of seawater tests, a finding that could ultimately save boat owners millions of dollars in cleaning and fuel costs.

The research conducted by Dr. Kirill Efimenko, research assistant professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and Dr. Jan Genzer, professor in the same department, shows for the first time that surface coatings containing nests of different-sized "wrinkles" are effective in preventing barnacles from firmly latching on to the coatings.

"The results are very promising," Efimenko said. "We are dealing with a very complex phenomenon. Living organisms are very adaptable to the environment, so we need to find their weakness. And this hierarchical wrinkled topography seems to do the trick."

Researchers created the coatings by stretching a rubber sheet, applying an ultra-violet ozone treatment to it, and then relieving the tension, causing five generations of "wrinkles" to form concurrently. The coatings were further covered with an ultra-thin layer of semifluorinated material. During ocean tests performed in Wilmington, N.C., the wrinkled materials remained free of barnacles after 18 months of seawater exposure, while flat coatings with the same chemical composition showed barnacle buildup after just one month in seawater.

Engineers and scientists have strived for decades to uncover ways to keep barnacles off ship hulls. Barnacle colonization on a ship bottom increases the ship's "drag" in the water, forcing the engine to burn more fuel to maintain the same speed. After six months in the water, a ship's fuel consumption increases substantially, Efimenko said. That costs ship owners including the military plenty of extra cash.

"It's like running your air conditioner with the windows open," Genzer said.

Barnacle buildup also forces owners to remove ships from the water and place them on dry docks for cleaning. This expensive procedure costs ships valuable time at sea when they could be making money.

For many years, ship owners fought barnacles by coating their hulls with toxic substances that resisted barnacle buildup. But those substances killed fish and other marine life in harbors, causing governments around the world to ban ships from using them.

That led to increased interest in endowing the ship coatings with wrinkled topographies. The coatings share traits with surfaces found in nature, where rough surfaces such as shark skin generally stay free of debris buildup. In contrast, other marine species, such as whales, have smooth skin but often carry barnacles as unwanted hitchhikers.


'/>"/>

Contact: Nate DeGraff
nate_degraff@ncsu.edu
919-515-3848
North Carolina State University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Pitt researchers create non-toxic clean-up method for potentially toxic nano materials
2. Corrosion-inhibiting coatings containing good bacteria
3. University researchers to develop coatings that kill superbugs
4. Ultra-fine coatings on sediment grains influence nitrate and sulfate storage in soil
5. New polymer coatings prevent corrosion, even when scratched
6. Nanoscale coating protect products -- and the economy
7. Coating copies microscopic biological surfaces
8. Coating improves electrical stimulation therapy used for Parkinsons, depression, chronic pain
9. Candy-coating keeps proteins sweet
10. Dog owners more likely to share germs with pets by not washing hands than by sleeping with dog
11. Stem cell research to benefit horse owners and trainers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/13/2017)... , March 13, 2017 Future of security: Biometric Face ... ... DERMALOGs Face Matching enables to match face pictures against ... basis to identify individuals. (PRNewsFoto/Dermalog Identification Systems) ... DERMALOG,s "Face Matching" is the fastest software for biometric Face Matching ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... CITY , March 7, 2017   HireVue ... help top global companies identify the best talent, faster, ... as Chief Sales Officer (CSO) and Diana Kucer ... appointments round out a seasoned executive team poised to drive ... beyond, building on a year of record bookings in ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... LONDON , March 2, 2017 Who ... infringement lawsuits? Download the full report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4313699/ ... ON THE FINGERPRINT SENSOR FIELD? Fingerprint sensors using ... smartphones. The fingerprint sensor vendor Idex forecasts an increase ... in mobile devices and of the fingerprint sensor market ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... March 23, 2017 , ... Lajollacooks4u is proud to announce it has become the premiere team-building ... challenges for companies around the world, such as Illumina, HP and Qualcomm, and is ranked ... its increasing popularity is due to its new team building format, a way for teams ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... 2017  Northwest Biotherapeutics (OTCQB: NWBO) (NW Bio), ... for solid tumor cancers, today announced that yesterday ... announced last Friday, March 17, 2017. ... securities totaling 28,843,692 shares, comprised of 18,843,692 common ... of Class C Warrants pre-funded at the closing ...
(Date:3/23/2017)...  GlobeImmune, Inc. today announced it has entered into ... shares of its common stock to NantCell, Inc., a ... the sale of its common stock, NantCell has agreed ... GlobeImmune 200,000 shares, an estimated $2.0 million in value, ... pleased to enter into this strategic agreement with NantCell," ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... Branford, CT (PRWEB) , ... March 23, 2017 ... ... Counsel, LLC, was recently selected by the Connecticut Technology Council (CTC) as a ... honored at CTC’s thirteenth annual Women of Innovation Awards Dinner. , The dinner ...
Breaking Biology Technology: