AkzoNobel develops pioneering software for shipping industry

AkzoNobel has introduced the shipping industry's first digital tool that enables operators to accurately assess and predict the risk of hull fouling, depending on which routes are being traded.

Developed by the company's Marine Coatings business, Intertrac analyzes various data streams in order to draw up an accurate fouling risk profile. This can then be used to tailor a coatings system to a vessel’s specific route, helping to maximize operational efficiencies and reduce costs.

"This is a valuable tool that enables us to recommend optimal fouling control coating specifications, which in turn helps to generate major cost savings for customers," said Conrad Keijzer, AkzoNobel's Executive Committee member responsible for Performance Coatings. "It is also an excellent example of how we are always looking to innovate and set ourselves apart from the competition."

The patent pending Intertrac software divides the world’s oceans and coastal waters into 64 large marine ecosystems, each with its own fouling risk and characteristics, including salinity, temperature, thermal range, seasonality and typical pH levels.

Route information is obtained from data provided by a vessel's Automatic Identification System (AIS), which is available in the public domain. This establishes operating profiles and helps to quantify the hull fouling challenge that a specific vessel has faced while in operation.

Added Rob Molenaar, Managing Director of the company's Marine and Protective Coatings business: "This is a unique tool which can offer important benefits to owners and operators. By combining details of a vessel's voyage with our in-depth analysis of the fouling challenge, we can provide our customers with detailed information on the level of fouling risk that they face."

The Intertrac software will also help AkzoNobel to refine future product development as more and more is learned about both the marine environment in different parts of the world and how it affects different vessels.

Already tried and tested having been in operation for a number of months, Intertrac has caught the attention of a major oil company, which has asked for a fleet-wide fouling risk assessment across all of its ships.

AkzoNobel's Marine Coatings business supplies advanced International coatings to the worldwide shipping industry, including renowned product lines such as Intersleek, Intercept and Intershield.