When Minerva decided to expand its 70-strong fleet of tanker and dry bulk ships in
order to enter the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) sector for the first time, it had very
specific requirements. Having established Minerva Gas Inc., a dedicated in-house
ship management company for its Gas business, and having commissioned the
construction of five state-of-the-art LNG carriers, the company wanted a top-tier
antifouling hull coating that would reduce fuel consumption and support the company’s
initiative for GHG emissions reduction. As the LNGs have demanding trade routes, the
selected coating system had to ensure excellent day to day performance for both laden
and ballast voyages, taking into consideration the possibility for the vessels occasionally
to have to steam slowly or experience long idle periods in fouling aggressive waters.
After assessing offers from a number of suppliers, Minerva Gas Inc. settled on a full
coatings and services solution from Hempel. For the underwater hulls, we specified
our Globic 9500, an advanced antifouling coating that utilises patented Nano Acrylate
technology to improve hull efficiency, both in terms of fuel consumption and reduction
in emissions. We have worked with Minerva since 1996. During this time, we have
established a trusted collaboration and a number of Minerva vessels already use our
antifouling hull coatings. Based on this experience, the Globic 9500 coating system will
provide extremely high fuel and emissions savings for the company’s new LNG vessels.
As part of our technical service package, we assigned a hand-picked team of Hempel
coating advisors to oversee the project. Onsite throughout application, the advisors
ensured that all coatings were applied according to specification, and that the application
time, waste and costs were minimised. Nikolaos Grivas, Technical Manager of Minerva
Gas, stated that despite the challenges that arose due to the Covid-19 pandemic and
as major Hempel’s production facilities are based in China, the supply of materials to the
various construction sites of Minerva Gas vessels within Korea and China was flawless.
Moreover, the expertise and the customer approach mindset of Hempel technical
advisors indicates attention to the detail and willingness to achieve the specified outcome.
Regarding the vessels that are already in service the first indications regarding the
performance of the anti-fouling are quite good. The evaluation of the painting system is of
course in progress and it is monitored by the Energy and Efficiency department of Minerva.
In a nutshell, the cooperation of the two companies can be characterized as excellent,
based on sincere dialog and deep knowledge of the marine environment.