Navigation Links
Nontoxic hull coating resists barnacles, may save ship owners millions
Date:5/29/2009

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. New oral angiogenesis inhibitor offers potential nontoxic therapy for a wide range of cancers
2. Sugarcoating fruit fly development
3. Non-toxic hull coating resists barnacles, may save ship owners millions
4. Corrosion-inhibiting coatings containing good bacteria
5. University researchers to develop coatings that kill superbugs
6. Ultra-fine coatings on sediment grains influence nitrate and sulfate storage in soil
7. New polymer coatings prevent corrosion, even when scratched
8. Nanoscale coating protect products -- and the economy
9. Coating copies microscopic biological surfaces
10. Coating improves electrical stimulation therapy used for Parkinsons, depression, chronic pain
11. Candy-coating keeps proteins sweet
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/5/2017)... LONDON , April 4, 2017 KEY ... is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 25.76% ... neurodegenerative diseases is the primary factor for the growth ... full report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/4807905/ MARKET INSIGHTS The ... of product, technology, application, and geography. The stem cell ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... March 30, 2017  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com ... Genome hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in ... will focus on developing health and wellness apps that ... Hack the Genome is the first hackathon for ... world,s largest companies in the genomics, tech and health ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... March 29, 2017  higi, the health IT company ... North America , today announced a Series ... acquisition of EveryMove. The new investment and acquisition accelerates ... tools to transform population health activities through the collection ... higi collects and secures data today on ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/23/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... May 22, 2017 , ... ... year in a row in the Aragon Research Globe™ for Corporate Learning, 2017. ... with industry direction and market demand, and effectively perform against those strategies. NetDimensions’ ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... Philadelphia, PA. (PRWEB) , ... May 23, 2017 ... ... Clinical Works as Vice President of Clinical Operations. She brings years ... Pharmaceuticals, and Yaupon Therapeutics. From her professional foundation as a licensed occupational therapist, ...
(Date:5/22/2017)... MA (PRWEB) , ... May 22, 2017 , ... Stratevi, ... has expanded to the East Coast. It has opened an office in downtown Boston ... therapies are finding it increasingly more important to generate evidence on the value they ...
(Date:5/21/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... CNSDose is a genetically driven, clinically ... by finding the right antidepressant faster. CNSDose speeds recovery and reduces side ... personalized approach to treatment. , A peer-reviewed and published, 12-week double-blind ...
Breaking Biology Technology: