AkzoNobel, Philips in UV-LED antifouling project

AMSTERDAM _ Dutch corporate giants Akzo Nobel and Philips have joined forces in the fight against yachtsmen’s unending bane: hull fouling. Paints and coatings maker Akzo Nobel uses Philips’ expertise in UV-LED lighting and electronics to jointly develop an economically viable, biocide-free antifouling solution.

The 2 companies say they intend to revolutionize the antifouling industry through applications for ships, yachts and offshore vessels. Their plan is to integrate UV LED in a protective coating scheme.  UV light provides surface protection without chemicals making it an environmentally safe antifouling technology.

“We actively explore and develop alternatives to biocidal-based solutions,” says Oscar Wezenbeek, head of AkzoNobel Marine and Protective Coatings. AkzoNobel introduced the industry’s first biocide-free antifouling coating, Intersleek, in 1996. Since then, Intersleek has saved owners over $3 billion of fuel and 32 million tons of CO2.