Could Fluoropolymer Coatings Help Off-Shore Vessels Stay Protected Against Harsh Marine Environments
Whether we’re talking about ships, jetties, or offshore drilling rigs, one common enemy all must contend with is the ocean itself. From algae and barnacles to the saltwater itself and fluctuations in temperature, these vessels take a beating on a constant basis. One common issue is fouling. Fouling refers to the accumulation of unwanted material on the surface of a vessel. Biofouling includes algae, bacteria, barnacles, mollusk, and other sea life that could potentially affect the ability for the vessel to move. This not only affects its maneuverability, but its fuel consumption as well. In heat exchangers, biofouling could cause clogging, which could produce disastrous results.
In order to combat these issues, designers and engineers have long considered a wide variety of materials to prevent fouling organisms from settling on the surface and other parts of these vessels. The latest research indicates that fluoropolymer coatings may provide the best protection. When compared to silicone-based coatings, fluoropolymer coatings reduced the amount of slime and barnacle attachment. Although there is still a lot of testing to be done, fluoropolymers may offer a wide variety advantages over other materials when it comes to anti-fouling.
Moreover, this is only one area where fluoropolymers have been shown to enhance protection and reduce the potential for adverse events from occurring in a wide variety of applications.
Fluorotherm, a fluoropolymer manufacturer, recently brought to market a new hybrid heat exchanger incorporating fluoropolymers to withstand the transfer of harsh chemicals for heating and cooling purposes.
According to Fluorotherm:
Fluoropolymers offers a number of advantages over other materials when it comes to a wide variety of applications. In the case of the new hybrid heat exchanger, it reduces particle buildup and enhances heat transfer efficiency. This is important for manufacturing and other industries where harsh chemicals may be used.
Fluoropolymers negate corrosion and other effects, lowering costs, improving efficiency, and reducing the likelihood of an adverse event from occurring. As more research comes out as it is with anti-fouling benefits, fluoropolymers will be used more often by many different industries.
A representative from Fluorotherm is available to speak about the use of fluoropolymers in anti-fouling applications, its new hybrid heat exchanger, and the fluoropolymer industry as a whole. Please contact Chris Hardwick at [email protected] to schedule an interview.