Low-toxic cost-efficient environment-friendly antifouling materials
The global focus on the negative effects of increasing emission of Green House Gases (GHG) is one of the key issues on the agenda for the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). Consequently, the whole marine value chain has started to develop solutions aiming at reducing GHG emissions. This will have positive impacts on the ship transport sector, on the fishing industry in Europe (the fourth largest in the world) and on the aquaculture sector, which is an important source of quality protein in Europe.
The BYEFOULING project addresses high volume production of low toxic and environmentally friendly antifouling coatings for mobile and stationary maritime applications. The technology will fulfil the coating requirements as a result of the incorporation of novel antifouling agents and a new set of binders into coating formulations for maritime transportation and fishing vessels, floating devices and aquaculture. The main goal of BYEFOULING is to design, develop and upscale antifouling coatings with enhanced performance compared to current available products. The approach in BYEFOULING is to tackle the different stages of the biofouling
process using innovative antifouling agents, covering surface-structured materials, protein adsorption inhibitors, quorum sensing inhibitors, natural biocides and microorganisms with antifouling properties. Encapsulation of the innovative compounds in smart nanostructured materials will be implemented to optimize coating performance and cost all along their life cycle. A proof-of-concept for the most promising candidates will be developed and demonstrators will be produced and tested on fields.
Active dissemination of the results will be communicated to a large public through the maintenance of a homepage and a series of workshops at international level, involving scientific community, industry and standardization organisations. BYEFOULING will provide the means for industrial, cost-effective and robust manufacturing of antifouling coatings in Europe. It involves key EU industry players and SMEs as coating components developers and production technology providers. A set of procedures, guidelines and fabrication tools will be developed, enabling short time to market for new coating concepts. Readily available low toxic and cost-effective antifouling coatings will increase the efficiency of maritime industry and be the enabling technology to realize new products. BYEFOULING will contribute to the objectives of European policies as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, REACH regulation of production and use of chemicals directive, the Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area, the implementation of the Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) and EU's Lead Market Initiatives (LMIs).
BYEFOULING is a four-year project which will achieve its objectives by implementing interdependencies between RTD activities of innovative development of antifouling materials and coating technologies and between testing, demonstration and validation of developed technologies led by industrial partners. Theoretical studies will also be carried out in a close relationship between industry and academia.