Unfortunately the last proposal to be made to an Owner, in this deeply depressed freight market would be to consider the implementation of the IMO Ballast Water Convection to meet the dates once the convention enters into force and especially to meet the already set dates by USCG.
After the ratification of the convention by Denmark on September 11th 2012, the states which ratified the convention control about 29% of the word fleet of the 35% required. The USCG already set fix dates for vessels entering United States waters: Vessels Constructed before the 1st of December 2013 and having Ballast Water Capacity of more than 5000 m3 will have to comply with Regulation D-2 of the International Convection for the control and management of ships’ Ballast Water and sediments by the first dry-docking after the 1st January 2016.
In case the States required to ratify the convection will be reached before 2015, which is highly likely, this will create a high demand of BWMT installations in the years 2015 to 2017 when in periods may reach 40 to 50 installations daily.
The first reaction from the Owners may be that the year 2016 is still too far away, which is not hard to understand. However we consult Owners not to spare the minimum of expense to confront the approaching set dates. A detailed and profound study for the implementation of the system requires a long preparation period which may lead the Owners to dates approaching 2015.
Following steps are required for the implementation:
A. Techno economical evaluation containing: • Review of information selected and technical and commercial evaluation of all existing ballast water treatment systems in the market (about 30).
• Technology and status of approval.
• Systems’ specification.
• Operational features and eventual difficulties.
• Commercial issues and OPEX evaluation.
• Advantages and disadvantages.
• Vendors’ comparison tables.
Such Techno-economical evaluation may be prepared by an experienced consultant or by the Technical staff of the Managing Company. The duration of the evaluation may, by an experienced consultant, last about 1 month for the first group of sister vessels and about 2 weeks for each additional group (i.e. for a Managing Company operating 5 different types and groups of sister vessels may last about 2 months).
In case the Owners / Managers elect to perform the evaluation in-house, they will have to reckon with double the time and at least one experienced technical staff member and an assistant, to work full time on the project. The reason for such prolonged duration is that the in-house technical department members will have to interview each of the about 30 vendors separately, whilst the technical consultant has already interviewed most of the vendors. On completion of the evaluation the consultant shall propose 3 to 5 systems for each group of vessels for further elaboration.
B. Once the techno-economical evaluation is completed, the Owners / Managers will have to elect whether they wish to proceed with a 3D evaluation / scanning of the on board existing installation and have sound basis for the elaboration of the ballast water system installation.
An experienced consultant shall arrange for skilled technicians to visit the vessel in a suitable port and arrange for the existing installation to be 3D scanned during loading or discharging. Owners may elect to perform such 3D evaluation with their elected technicians, but they will have to be confident that the company entrusted with the task, will be in position to avail skilled technicians in marine works and especially in installation of Ballast Water Treatment systems.
In both cases, suitable loading or discharging port shall be elected, since it is difficult to transport the required equipment to countries with strict customs’ regulations. This search for a suitable port may take long (say 3 months).
C. Based on the techno-economical evaluation and the 3D scanning, Owners / Managers are now in a position to invite selected candidate vendor(s) and discuss all financial and technical aspects. Apart from the purchase price and the applicable discount, they may extend their discussion to eventual Owner’s benefits, such as additional spare parts extended guarantee etc. This may take about 1 month. The consultant may be of great assistance if he is invited to attend the meetings.
D. The Owners / Managers are now is a position to place the order. Most of the makers required under normal circumstances a duration of about 6 months to deliver.
At this stage and according to the prevailing circumstance the Owner may proceed with the order or postpone same for a later date to eventually coincide the delivery of the system with vessel’s repair schedule, considering also eventual delay for transportation of the equipment from vendors’ premises to the repair facility.
E. Meantime since the system has been selected, the consultant or the in-house technical staff may proceed with preparation of detailed drawings for Class and Administration’s approval. Simultaneously, an engineering study performing all required calculations that will ensure the proper operation of the ballast system after installation of the treatment equipment and will minimize the required modifications, will take place, based on the developed 3D model of the vessel and detailed drawings of the selected supplier. We consider that the duration of such drawings preparation will take about 2 to 3 months. The unknown factor in this case will be the time which the Class requires to approve the submitted drawing, especially in periods of congestion.
In any case we consider that the drawings’ development and plan approval may be completed during the time the vendor requires to deliver the system (6 to 8 months).
F. Concurrently with D and E above the Owners / Managers technical staff may prepare a technical specification eventually with the aid of the consultants, once the drawings are approved and the engineering study will be completed. The technical specification with the approved drawings and the materials list produced after the study, may be forwarded to several repairing facilities for their quotation. This part of the project may take 2 months after the final plan approval has been completed. In case the system’s installation duration is longer than the specified repair duration, the Owners / Managers may elect to commence the system’s installation at sea by riding crew and complete same in the repairers’ facility, or to start same at the repairing yard and complete at sea. We consider that vessel’s scheduled works and system’s installation may take about one month.
Owners should consider eventual transportation delays of the system and equipment to the repair facilities which may take two months (US/Europe to Far East). The cost of such transport may also be substantial and will have to be considered in the total expenditure.
G. On completion of the installation at the end of the repair period testing and eventual trials may be performed to prove the good performance of the installed system. Such performance test is advisable to be performed in the presence of a consultant having experience with performance of similar installations.
H. Meantime required booklets such as “Ballast Water Record Book” shall be prepared and placed on board. A BWS officer shall be trained and assigned the related tasks on board the vessel.
Such booklets and training material may be prepared by the consultant or by the Owners / Managers technical staff during or before the installation period.
I. Once the installation is completed and delivered, the performance of the system will have to be followed and eventual guarantee claims to be risen against the vendors, with eventual assistance by the consultant. Taking into consideration above durations and preparation, the vessel(s) may be ready to undergo system’s installation by end of 2013 / mid of 2014 which is still ahead of the congestion period 2015-2017.
Why to involve ARGO NAVIS
ARGO NAVIS is for the last 2 years heavily involved in studying / evaluating the Convention’s, USCG’s, Administrations’ and Class’ requirements.
Already met and interviewed nearly all BWTS makers in connection with the entrusted projects.
ANDRIAKI SHIPPING CO. LTD. entrusted ARGO NAVIS, as a first step, the techno-economical evaluation of BWTS’ for all vessels of its fleet, which is already completed.
SCF-UNICOM MANAGEMENT SERVICES (CYPRUS) LTD. entrusted ARGO NAVIS, as a first step, the techno economical study for 4 types of vessels of its fleet, which is already completed.
COSMOSHIP MANAGEMENT S.A. entrusted the Technical study for their new buildings in order to select from builders’ makers list the suitable system(s) for their new buildings. The study is already completed.
ARGO NAVIS has already performed free of charge presentations to more than 30 Greek and foreign shipping companies, while has performed presentations at RINA & IMAREST joint branches in Greece and Cyprus.
ARGO NAVIS is in a position to render all kind of services required in connection with BWTS’ installation and the Convention’s implementation.
• Perform full and complete techno-economical evaluation of all existing BWT systems and propose the most suitable system(s) for the types of vessels on which Owners intend to install them.
• Arrange in collaboration with their local and foreign associated companies, to perform 3D scanning on board the vessels.
• Consult Owners and attend meetings with candidate vendors for technical and financial discussion and propose to Owners the most technically and economically suitable system(s) for the types of vessels of their fleet.
• Prepare all drawing and details required by the Class, submit same for approval and follow up the plan approval process.
• Proceed with engineering study of the installation.
• Consult / assist Owners / Managers in preparation of the Technical Specification for the installation of the system in a repair facility and/or organize in collaboration with its associated companies any part or the complete installation of the system by riding crew at sea.
• Attend installation of the system in a repair facility and/or at sea and final testing of the system.
• Perform part or all the installation of equipment, through their local and foreign associated companies.
• Prepare and deliver the required, by the Convention, booklets and train the assigned with the BWT System officer.
• Follow performance of the installed system and rise eventual guarantee claims against the BWTS’ vendor.
ARGO NAVIS will be glad to attend a meeting with Owners considering any of above services to be rendered and discuss further details, eventual complications and financial aspects.