Japan’s Parliamentary Vice-Minister of the Environment, Tetsuya Yagi, presented the award to NPMC President Seiichiro Shirahata after a Selection Committee found the coating system met all the criteria in the Countermeasure Technology category.
In particular, the judging panel found that coating contributed to reduced drag, consequently resulting in lower fuel consumption and reduced CO2 emissions from those vessels that have applied the hull coating.
“As regulations to limit ship emissions enter into force in January, we are delighted to have won this accolade," Shirahata said. "This award recognizes the significant contribution the coating is having on reducing emissions and shipping’s impact on the global environment. Hull performance monitoring has shown that our low-friction technology is providing a real payback for customers compared to other systems.”
Based on a patented “water trapping” hydrogel technology – a concept derived from the structure of tuna fish – LF-Sea coatings reduce water flow resistance (drag), meaning less energy is required to propel the ship through the water. Shipowners that have applied the coating have benefitted from reduced fuel consumption of between four and 10 percent, compared to regular SPC antifouling paints.
Coatings in the LF-Sea series, include the LF-Sea, LF-Sea150 HyB product, introduced in 2007, and A-LF-Sea, which was launched in 2013. However, a new underwater antifouling coating is set to be added to the series next year.
Nippon Paint Marine recently reported an annual increase in the application of its coating LF-Sea coating products. As of June 2019, the company’s low-friction coatings had been applied to the hulls of more than 2,900 ships.