Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - 30

LiquiGuard
www.gopropfx.com / HQ: Fort Lauderdale, Fla. / Employees: Seven / Abbas Sadriwalla, chairman and CEO: "The industry is fervently looking for a better solution to take care of this problem."

liquiguard says propfx solves a major
problem for the marine industry and
has implications for other industrial
and commercial sectors.

Fouling's Foe

liquiguard's new coating protects marine
vessels from microorganisms. by tim o'connor
It's a problem that's been going
on since the days of Odysseus. When
a ship is still in the water, it's bound to
attract some unwanted riders. But now
coating manufacturer LiquiGuard
has a patent-pending innovation that
protects vessels from barnacles, zebra
mussels and other bio-fouling organisms, with a durability that exceeds
other current solutions.
All sea and fresh water vessel share
the problem of fouling: the accumulation of material such as marine organisms, algae and microorganisms
on submerged surfaces, which carries
significant economic and environmental costs. Many species are invasive
pests and transport themselves to new
30

environments by hitching these free
rides. According to a published report,
the U.S. Navy spends $1 billion-plus
on antifouling efforts. As the fouling
builds up, it can significantly impact
the operation of the vessel. The added
material creates more drag in the water, slowing boats and requiring them
to expend more fuel to maintain speed.
Maintenance also becomes an issue because the organisms can attach to the
propulsion system such as propeller,
shafts, rudder, trim tabs, etc. Fouling
can even damage the hull and impact
the vessel's structural integrity.
Boat operators have a limited ways
to prevent or remove the growth, and
all existing solutions have signifi-

South

cant drawbacks or challenges. One of
the most common treatments is anti-fouling paints, which contain a copper-based nitrate that is applied to the
hull in a thick coat. The paint is generally black in color to hide the discoloration of the anti-fouling chemical.
There are several problems with these
types of materials, besides the fact that
due to their ablative nature (layers of
the coating shed on an ongoing basis)
they need to be replaced on a regular basis. The anti-fouling chemicals
poison species indiscriminately and
can accumulate in waterways, causing
long-term damage. Use of these products are slowly being banned and many
ports will not allow vessels with anti-fouling coatings to dock.
Other products are designed to specifically prevent fouling from building
up on the running gear, which includes the propeller, drive shaft, etc.
Crews must clean the metal before
applying an etching compound followed by a topical coating that prevents organisms from getting a grip
on the running gear. When the vessel
is in operation, the force of the movement through the water dislodges the
fouling and flings it from the vessel.
However, by virtue of being a topical
coating, these products are displaced
easily if the ship runs into a sand bar or
a rope brushes against the propeller.
Reapplying the coating requires the
vessel to be dry-docked and the entire
process of application repeated.
"The industry is fervently looking
for a better solution to take care of
this problem," LiquiGuard CEO Abbas Sadriwalla says.

Creating a Solution
LiquiGuard's expertise in developing innovative specialty protective
coatings made it the right company to
come up with that solution. The key

manufacturing-today.com NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017

LIQUIGUARD co review.indd 30

10/30/17 2:07 PM


http://www.gopropfx.com http://www.manufacturing-today.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017

Table of Contents
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - 1
Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - Table of Contents
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Manufacturing Today - November/December 2017 - Cover3
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