As Canada’s leading graphene protective coatings company, GIT is focused on using graphene to deliver solutions for a wide range of applications, including marine transportation. GIT’s smart coatings technologies aim to tackle and solve complex issues by being part of the solution, with the end goal of solving the environmental crisis and saving money for the shipping industry.
The project consists of a comparative assessment between the new environmentally friendly coatings that will be developed by GIT and a benchmark marine coating – such as anti-fouling biocide-based, copolymer auto polishing, or foul release marine coatings. Graphene-based coatings have demonstrated potential to be a suitable eco-friendly alternative to protect ship hulls against corrosion and biofouling. The significance of this project is to demonstrate the ability of graphene-based coatings versus traditional marine coatings to reduce marine industry emissions while minimizing harm to marine life.
The development will include the synthesis of green chemistry formulations that will have surface characteristics that are repulsive to ocean micro-organisms and develop an “easy to clean effect,” other than being ultra-low drag surfaces so the ships will consume less fuel. Factors such as biofouling growth, adhesion of fouling organisms, types of fouling in each environmental, operational, and environmental impacts, coating adhesion performance, effect of surface characteristics on shipping fuel efficiency, effect of VOC/GHG emissions on a global scale.
The project will consider marine coatings in its five stages, as follows: production of coating, application of coating, operation of the ship with coating, maintenance of the ship (hull cleaning and recoating if necessary), end of life and disposal.
This joint research program runs in the Halifax-Dartmouth technological park for 3 years.