Sustanability

Revolutionising the antifouling market

Kongsberg Maritime and Jotun has launched their new remotely operated Jotun HullSkater - a revolutionary climate friendly robotics-based solution for proactive hull cleaning.

  • Text:Cato Werner Gustavson

​Nils Jørgen Fon, Project Manager at Kongsberg Maritime’s Vessel Robotics business unit is excited to finally being able to share the good news.

“Jotun needed to solve an age-old problem regarding keeping ship hulls clean and chose to partner with the best in the subsea robotics business,” he says proudly while unpacking the HullSkater unit at KM’s brand-new R&D, production and service facility in Horten, Norway.

Everyone on the team agrees that working on the HullSkater – a robotics-based solution to a problem as old as the history of seafaring itself – feels very entrepreneurial: they gathered a bunch of talented and driven individuals from across the organisation with great ideas, and a need to make an impact, they gave them a problem to solve and the space they needed to work.

“We are disrupting the whole industry with the HullSkater,” he says while the rest of the team nods approvingly.

Reduced fuel costs and emissions

Kongsberg Maritime and Jotun joined forces in 2017 to develop the Hull Skater Solutions which can potentially reduce fuel costs by around US$3.6 million and CO2 emissions by 12.5 percent annually, on a typical vessel. 

Kjell Gjestad Vice President of Vessel Robotics at Kongsberg Maritime underlines importance of the environmental and climate aspect as the solution’s most important selling point. 

“Not only will our solution help cut fuel costs, but it will reduce CO2 emissions by 10 million tonnes annually if just 25 percent of ships in challenging operations converts to this solution by 2030. That’s equal to around a quarter of Norway’s total CO2 emissions in 2018,” he says while going through a presentation showing both the solution’s enormous market potential and its positive climate impact.

He further underscores how the solution can help protect the oceans.

“By proactively scrubbing the hull with the HullSkater before life starts growing down there, we help mitigate the risk of transmitting unwanted organisms who hitch-hikes to locations where they don’t belong,” he says.

Kongsberg Maritime is responsible for industrialising, manufacturing and servicing the HullSkater and has contributed with secure remote control, cloud-based data storage, battery technology, acoustics and composite materials. It also features KONGSBERG’s global communications infrastructure and KOGNIFAI cloud ecosystem.

The President of Kongsberg Maritime Egil Haugsdal is excited to partner with Jotun helping customers making their businesses safer, more sustainable and more efficient.

“Conserving our ocean environment and enabling sustainable marine operations is a priority for KONGSBERG, and HullSkater offers a uniquely proactive way to solve the difficult problem of fouling growth,” he says.

From signing the partnership agreement between KM and Jotun 26/01/17. Front left: Frank Are Berggren (Jotun), Egil Haugsdal, Geir Axel Oftedahl (Jotun), Hege Skryseth, Geir Håøy, Morten Fon (Jotun). Behind left: Lars Granbakken, Svein Gunvaldsen (Jotun), Bjørn Jalving, Alfie Ong (Jotun).