Wärtsilä of Finland has been granted Alternate Management System (AMS) acceptance for its AQUARIUS®UV Ballast Water Management System (BWMS) by the United States Coastguard (USCG). This allows all US and foreign flag ships fitted with the Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV BWMS to operate in US territorial waters and to discharge its treated ballast water for an interim period of up to 5 years from the ship specific implementation date.
AMS acceptance is the first stage towards obtaining full USCG type approval. Wärtsilä anticipates having all activities necessary to gain full US type approval completed within the 5 year interim period.
Based on an evaluation of the Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV BWMS test data by the USCG, AMS acceptance has been granted for use over the full range of water salinities, i.e. fresh, brackish and sea water. As one of only two AMS accepted systems without salinity restrictions, the Wärtsilä solution permits ships fitted with the system to operate in the Great Lakes region, which is important for operators in this challenging environment.
“AMS acceptance is an important milestone in providing ship owners with a BWMS that enables true global operations, and is a key part of the Wärtsilä BWMS Partnership programme, which aims to support our customers in meeting their environmental compliance objectives,” says Joe Thomas, Director, Wärtsilä Ballast Water Management Systems.
Wärtsilä has already delivered the Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV system for four new platform supply vessels (PSVs) currently being built for US based Tidewater Marine LLC, one of the leading providers of offshore service vessels to the global energy industry. In addition, the Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV system has been retrofitted to two LPG carriers for Chemgas BV, and is being installed on an LPG carrier owned by Carbofin SpA currently trading in US waters.
As part of the Wärtsilä Partnership programme, the ship owner has access to technology choice, offering filtration with either ultra-violet (UV) or electro-chlorination (EC) ballast water treatment. Wärtsilä is preparing an AMS application for its AQUARIUS® EC BWMS so as to provide customers with fully approved technology options upon completion of the approval process.
The Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV
The Wärtsilä AQUARIUS®UV is a modular ballast water management system involving filtration and medium pressure UV disinfection technology. It is designed to provide a safe, flexible and economical process.
The system treats the ballast water using a two stage process. Upon uptake, the seawater is first passed through a back washing filter (first stage). The filtered seawater then passes through a UV chamber (second stage) where ultra-violet light is used to disinfect the water prior to its entering the ballast tank. Upon discharge, water from the ballast tanks passes through the UV chamber only for a second time.
LNG World News Staff, November 18, 2013; Image: Wärtsilä