A new coating developed to deliver greater protection to bulk carrier cargo holds has gained considerable market acceptance.
According to Nippon Paint Marine, its new Neoguard Toughness coating has already been applied to the holds of 37 bulk carriers since its official introduction in August last year. These include vessels operated by owners that include Eastern Pacific Shipping, Synergy Group, Far East Lines, Iskenderun Shipping, and Wisdom Marine.
“We developed Neoguard Toughness following demand from shipowners for a more impact-resistant epoxy coating system for holds and hatch coamings, but we didn’t expect to have quite as many applications so soon after market launch,” said Makoto Nakagawa, marketing general manager at Nippon Paint Marine.
“Neoguard Toughness is undoubtedly one of the hardest, toughest coatings we have produced for the commercial marine market.”
The thickness of the highly solid epoxy coating is particularly suited to protecting steel structures from abrasion and impact damage from iron ore, coal, and other bulk cargoes, while providing long-term protection against corrosion. The product satisfies the requirement of the US FDA for compatibility with grain and feed.
“Mechanical damage to cargo holds from abrasive cargoes and high impact loading procedures is the primary reason traditional coatings fail, which if goes unchecked can lead to corrosion and structural failure. Neoguard Toughness reduces this risk,” said Nakagawa.
Resistant to cracking from impacts of up to 4 joules, the hardened paint is applied to achieve a dry film thickness of 250µm. No special equipment or machinery is required for application. The coating is applied using a conventional air spray, with a full cure dry taking five days at 30 degC.
Iskenderun Shipping applied the coating to the holds of the 32,676 dwt ISKENDERUN M in November. Commenting on the coating’s performance, Ahmet Hamza, general coordinator at Iskenderun Shipping, said: “So far so good. We have found Neoguard Toughness offers significant cost savings by reducing the maintenance and repair requirement. The coating’s easy cleaning properties have also allowed for quick and efficient turnaround times between cargoes.”
While hold cleaning and reduced maintenance are obvious benefits, John Drew, Nippon Paint Marine director, added that the toughness of the coating can mitigate against port delays following failed cargo hold inspections.
“Neoguard Toughness significantly improves the chances of passing inspection,” he said. “The coating enables ship owners to keep their cargo holds in excellent condition.”
The accompanying images of Neoguard Toughness applied to the cargo holds of a bulk carrier were taken five months after application. The vessel had been carrying coal cargoes, which are typically aggressive to coatings.