In NETSCo News

NETSCo Engineer working on BWMS retrofitIn cooperation with sister company CHOICE Ballast Solutions (CHOICE), NETSCo is pleased to announce that there are more than 30 ballast water management system (BWMS) projects in varying stages of completion. CHOICE together with NETSCo are positioned to become one of the top BWMS planning, compliance consulting and installation resources worldwide.

CHOICE provides end-to-end BWMS solutions for shipowners, a more efficient, cost-effective outcome. John P Dooley, President of CHOICE states, “The difficulty of a retrofit can vary depending on the vessel and the system chosen for installation. The BWMS can affect critical operational parameters such as power consumption and ballast water flow rates. Prior to any decision, CHOICE recommends that owners assess ships under their management, considering operational requirements, BWMS type, operating costs, condition and age of the vessel. Our approach is to minimize the impacts of BWMS installation on vessel operations and the crew.”

Evon Li and William Burroughs at ABS wrote in their recent paper Evaluation of BWMS for Cost-Effective Compliance, “Making the wrong BWMS selection may push an economically viable vessel beyond the point where the BWMS retrofit is feasible leading to early scrapping of the vessel. At some point in the retrofit project, correcting a mistake in the final selection of the BWMS can become economically unrecoverable.  …owners and managers should start evaluating installation proposals from reputable Naval Architect/Marine Engineering firms and installation contractors (some can perform turnkey designs and installations). Selection criteria for designers and installation contractors should be based on success criteria developed during the feasibility study (experience with BWMS retrofits and the final preselected BWMS). The reliability and the reputation of the designer should be examined to ensure that full support will be available throughout the entire retrofit process.”

CHOICE and NETSCo have strong working relationships with Alfa Laval, Ecochlor, Optimarin, De Nora and Hyde Marine as well as managing BWM projects involving other treatment manufacturers. Each BWMS is as unique as the ship that it is installed on and in-depth knowledge of the treatment technology and its integration to the operation of the vessel can be critical. Richard Mueller, Co-founder and CEO of CHOICE Ballast Solutions and CEO/President of NETSCo holds eight patents, both in the USA and internationally, for the design of the Nutech 03 Mark III BWMS. This system was sold to NK 03, is IMO Type Approved and the latest upgrade is in review with the USCG for type approval.

“Highly skilled marine engineers with experience in BWMS retrofits are what is needed to create detail drawings that will optimize equipment and piping placement as well as integrating the system to the ship’s operation. Adding to the complexity of the projects are special considerations of the vessel, for example, dealing with hazardous areas, submerged ballast pumps, gravity-based top side tanks or limitations in space. Our team of experts have the technical understanding to create comprehensive ship designs that can cover a variety of ship types ranging from tankers, cruise ships, gas and bulk carriers, ATB’s and most other kinds of vessels,” said Richard Mueller.