Reactivating The Global OSV Market

Sonihull, the world’s leading ultrasonic antifouling technology business, is helping OSV fleet operators reactivate their vessels using Green Tech solutions to extend vessel life and profitability.

Back in 2019, as the passenger vessel slowdown took hold, Sonihull saw a massive increase in demand for their technology, as operators looked for ways to in-water mothball their vessels. Operators needed antifouling systems that would continue to protect their Raw Sea Water systems while their vessels were laid-up so that they could be reactivated quickly without waiting in line for a drydock slot to have their box coolers cleaned.

The same surge is being seen during the current race to reactivate Offshore Support Vessels (OSVs). After two years of suppressed activity, the Offshore Oil & Gas market is on the rebound. The number of OSVs currently laid up has just dropped to its lowest point since 2016 and, as more offshore jack-ups and floating rigs are deployed, the global OSV fleet utilisation rate looks set to continue up to 75% and beyond.

Operators are looking at older vessels to fulfil demand, but older vessels are more likely to require upgrades in order to tender. As offshore demand increases and the number of OSVs still available to contract drops, the average age of the remaining vessels will increase and their quality will drop. Some of these vessels will be coming to the end of their useful life and will be scrapped, others will be capable but may suffer by not being able to qualify for more stringent green credentials.

There will be a long lag before newbuild OSVs will be able to catch up with two years’ worth of vessel scrappage. In the meantime, operators of older vessels will need to find a way to extend their working life and make hay before the new builds come on stream. Sonihull can help to re-activate these vessels and keep them in service for longer.

“This is where Sonihull makes decisions for OSV operators very easy,” explains Sonihull Director Darren Rowlands. “Sonihull systems will keep propellers clean between drydocks without any in-water polishing, this slashes fuel burn and CO2 emissions. Sonihull also drops installation and lifecycle costs for box cooler antifouling systems by up to 95% compared to Impressed Current Anti-Fouling systems. These two factors alone are enough to keep more OSVs productive and profitable.”

“On propeller installations, our technology can target up to 30% of a vessel’s fuel efficiency,” adds Rowlands. “By reducing fuel consumption and associated emissions, we can help
vessels with their green credentials and keep them in service longer without the need for expensive main equipment upgrades or vessel hybridisation.”

Protect your vessel

Sonihull’s mission is to deliver environmentally safe, cost effective antifouling wherever unwanted bio-fouling persists. Our vision is:

To make dosing the oceans with poisonous biocides and microplastics a thing of the past
To deliver effective antifouling systems using the power of ultrasound
To save the oceans, one ship at a time