Operating successfully with SHAPE

By Mads Raun Bertelsen, Head of Hull Performance Solutions, Hempel

Photo Credit: Hempel

Hempel’s coatings and performance monitoring tool combined gives shipowners and operators the opportunity to seek commercial advantage through new EEXI.

The International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) greenhouse gas (GHG) strategy is being rolled out through holistic approaches to emissions reduction. In June this year at its most recent Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC76) meeting, two amendments to MARPOL Annex VI (regulations that seek to reduce air pollution from ships) were adopted. These are the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) and the Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) both of which are expected to come into effect in 2023.

Newbuilds have been required to align with IMO’s (Energy Efficiency Design Index) since 2013. The new regulations will, however, require all ships of 400 gt or more to identify their EEXI efficiency levels, which determine the amount of fuel they burn and ergo the volume of GHGs they emit. The environmental gains sit alongside potential commercial benefits, as IMO calls on ports and other industry players to use these instruments to offer incentives to high scoring (low emitting) ships.

All aspects of ship operation and design can affect performance and will be under increasing scrutiny in the run up to the regulations’ implementation. Solutions as simple as slow steaming to high tech wind assisted propulsion systems will be explored as operators and owners find ways to reap the benefits of a high EEXI score.

To truly understand a ship’s performance, however, it’s important to understand how each component affects the way it moves though the water, with the ultimate aim of making it as frictionless as possible.

The coating covering the vessel also plays a huge role in vessel performance and should not be overlooked when seeking ways to reduce emissions. Leading global coatings provider Hempel has developed advanced hull coating solutions such as the Hempaguard range, which delivers measurable reductions in vessel emissions by both reducing friction below the waterline and avoiding any fouling build-up during vessel service. This results in both improved EEXI (out of dock performance) and CII (reducing speed loss) and consequently, significantly less fuel required to operate the vessel resulting in both financial and CO2 savings.

To further support the industry in its shift to a reduced emissions landscape, Hempel has developed its SHAPE (Systems for Hull and Propeller Efficiency) digital analysis tool that analyses vessel-specific data generated onboard the vessel and/or available via AIS or environmental databases.

With SHAPE, Hempel experts regularly analyse hull and propeller performance on vessels, tracking actual performance against a set of key performance indicators objectively defined in the ISO 19030 standard. This enables shipowners and operators to analyse the impact of changes in vessel operation - such as drydocking, in service solutions and maintenance - on fuel efficiency. As a result, shipowners can make data-driven decisions to improve efficiency and lower operating costs in line with the expectations of the EEXI and CII. One way to achieve this is through the application of appropriate hull and propeller coatings from Hempel’s extensive range. Data shows that whatever the age, size and operating patterns of your vessel the right coating solution can significantly improve your vessel’s performance.

The time frames for meeting the new regulations are tight and classification societies are encouraging their members to complete their EEXI as soon as possible. And as the industry absorbs the EEXI into its practices to reduce emissions, a vessel’s score will correlate to its value within the market. Hempel’s SHAPE can bring clarity to how your vessel is using its fuel and offers tangible ways to maximise performance, bringing you one step closer to a positive EEXI score.

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October 2021