Integrated ballast water treatment system meets environmental regulations

08 Sep 2010
The BWT 500i integrated ballast water treatment from Wärtsilä, combines filtering and ultraviolet treatment in the same housing.

The BWT 500i integrated ballast water treatment from Wärtsilä, combines filtering and ultraviolet treatment in the same housing.

Wärtsilä has launched a new ballast water treatment system, the BWT 500i, which has been developed together with the company's technology partner Trojan Marinex, the marine water solution division of Trojan Technologies.

The system has a compact design, making it easy to install and suitable for most vessels. It offers low maintenance costs and high throughput, with claimed outstanding treatment quality. The BWT 500i meets the latest stringent environmental regulations for ballast water management. Delivery of the first systems is expected to commence during the second quarter of 2011.

"Easy installation and a small profile are crucial for the retrofit market, and have been central to our design process from the outset," says Vesa Marttinen, director of Wärtsilä's environmental services unit. "We have done extensive pre-testing and have worked in close co-operation with our customers in order to meet the key requirements. With this product launch, we are confident that the Wärtsilä BWT 500i meets all regulatory and operational criteria very well."

The BWT 500i treats the ballast water via a two-step process, first by filtering out larger organisms and particles, and then by ultraviolet disinfection. The UV irradiation either kills the remaining organisms, or renders them incapable of reproduction. Each unit is capable of treating 500 m3 of ballast water per hour, with the possibility to install several units in parallel for higher flow rates.

The IMO Global Ballast Water convention is expected to be fully ratified in 2011, and will require existing vessels to install a certified ballast water treatment system before 2014 or 2016, depending on the ballast water capacity. Already some countries are proposing even stricter guidelines, a situation that was anticipated and incorporated into the design plan for the Wärtsilä system.

In February 2010, Wärtsilä Corporation and Trojan Technologies signed an exclusive agreement to jointly develop, market, and distribute a ballast water treatment product for ships.

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