Evaluation of Copper-Free Anti-Fouling Coating (2012-453)
- General Dynamics NASSCO
March 2012 - May 2014
NSRP ASE Investment: $468K
To determine the relative reduction of copper and zinc leachate concentrations in Graving Dock flood water that is achieved with newly developed copper free AF hull coatings.
The Navy spends approximately $44 million on underwater hull coating and diver cleanings annually. Ninety-nine percent of the current Navy fleet’s underwater hull area is coated with copper-based, ablative, antifouling (AF) coatings. These copper-based anti-fouling coatings are a major contributor to the presence of copper in harbor waters and are becoming an increasingly greater environmental concern. The purpose of this project was to determine the relative reduction of copper and zinc leachate concentrations in graving dock flood water that is achieved with newly developed copper-free AF hull coatings.
The Mobile Landing Platform (MLP) construction program, underway at NASSCO in San Diego, provided the Navy with a unique opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of a non-copper-based AF coating system on a new vessel. Constructed under identical conditions in the same facility, and launched in nearly the same environmental conditions almost a year apart, MLP 1 and MLP 2 were coated with a copper-based and non-copper-based AF coating system, respectively. Water samples were collected during the float-out of the vessels from the graving dock and a comparison made to determine the actual reduction in copper concentration when employing a non-copper-based AF coating.
Analytical results from the project show that the use of non-copper-based AF paint reduced the concentration of copper in graving dock water by up to 76%, indicating that the use of a non-copper-based AF hull coating system plays a significant role in reducing copper leachate. The project will also enable the Navy to evaluate service life and maintainability of a non-copper-based AF coating system.
Final Report – Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited
Point of Contact:
Jeff Schaedig, General Dynamics NASSCO