DHI closes land-based BWMS testing in Singapore

DHI will stop land-based testing at its Singapore ballast water centre DHI will stop land-based testing at its Singapore ballast water centre

Research laboratory DHI Singapore is to cease land-based testing for ballast water management systems (BWMS), citing type approval requirements that make testing in tropical waters a challenge.

In a letter posted on its website, the company noted that the requirement for a prescribed density of organisms measuring 10-50ɥ was difficult in Singaporean waters, where most organisms are smaller than 10ɥm. This has led to DHI researchers having to add organisms cultured in laboratories.

The ambient temperature in Singapore (of around 30°C) further complicates testing by limiting the survival of organisms where holding times of 48 hours or more are required. Some treatments require a long holding time, while the IMO requires samples to be taken after five days to check for potential regrowth.

The company concluded: “DHI Singapore has therefore decided to continue with shipboard testing, finalise the ongoing land-based testing projects and close the land-based test facility after all land-based tests have been successfully completed.”

The group’s sister laboratory in Denmark, where both land-based and shipboard testing is also conducted, is unaffected by the decision.

The move follows the recent decision by the University of Maryland’s Marine Environment Research Center to cease type approval testing for BWM systems, citing the lack of a standardised approach to testing and insufficient regulatory oversight.

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