The Small or medium-scale focused research Project ECO-REFITEC “Eco innovative refitting technologies and processes for shipbuilding industry promoted by European Repair Shipyards” aims to improve the competitiveness of the European shipyards and SME’s involved in shipbuilding, ship repair & recycling.
The project will help repair shipyards and ship operator to perform a refitting of existing fleet, through of technological development and new tools, helping shipping benchmark their performance, improving the retrofit processes and products, and assessing environmental and life cycle cost impact.
The project is funded by the European Commission under the Framework-7
ECO_REFITEC consortium is created by 13 partners from 9 Member States, both industrial and research/academic institutions. It is well balanced as it consists of :
3 European Repair Shipyards from Spain, Portugal, Romania
1 Shipbuilders and Ship repairers Association from the United Kingdom (SSA)
3 Universities from UK (SU), Romania (OUC CAES), Lithuania (KU),
4 Research institutions (SOERMAR, CTO, ISQ, VSTU),
1 IT company – Atlantec from Germany.
1 owner company (CONSAR)
Several of consortium participants (6) are recognized as SMEs. All of the involved research institutions have long lasting and wide experience in engineering and environment research as well as the well established contacts with shipyards in their countries. It is of great importance, because it ensures the broad dissemination of project results.
The participation of Repair Shipyards, Ship repairs Associations & owner companies in ECO_REFITEC project seems to be the crucial issue, as it ensures that developed IT tools are primarily based on the needs of the shipyards and shipping operator companies. This creates the opportunity of wide application of the obtained results within entire European Ship Repair and Conversion Industry.
The experience of individual Shipyards in production and application of different technologies and devices, next to the experience of operator companies in fleet maintenance provide substantially valuable contribution to the project. Indeed the project creates a considerable European partnership of repair shipyards, operators and research institutions which enhances the capability to attain the presumed goals.
The overall objective of ECO-REFITEC project is to IMPROVE THE COMPETITIVENESS OF THE EUROPEAN SHIPYARDS AND SME’s INVOLVED IN SHIPBUILDING, SHIP REPAIR & RECYCLING.
As ship owners and operators have to focus much more on to adopt measures to prevent or reduce any pollution from ships (new and existing), ECO-REFITEC project aim to develop IT supported tools for retrofit impact evaluation on ship life cycle economy; energy; environmental performance and safety; and to identify/develop/explore eco-retrofitting technologies and solutions for existing fleet to comply with some current and future IMO standards.
In addition, as the industry has to fulfil a wide range of constantly increasing requirements in the scope of environmental legislation and regulation, ECO-REFITEC aims also to provide practical and cost effective solutions to major environmental problems associated to the new eco-innovative process to be carried out in ship retrofitting activities in European repair shipyards.
The above general objective can be split among others, in the following bullet points.
- Strengthened global competitiveness of European Ship-Repair & Conversions Shipyards
- Identification and assessing of new technologies for ship retrofit processes that have a major impact on the attainment of a more environmentally sustainable and efficient waterborne transport.
- Compilation of a comprehensive catalogue of eco-retrofit technologies and solutions for existing fleet to comply with future IMO standards.
- Implementation of current and impending regulatory emission reduction measures in existing vessels.
- Preparation of the Ship-Repair Sector to meet the present and future needs of the shipping industry, assessing the shipyards emission throughout new developed IT tools utilized for emission estimation on the planning stage of particular ship repair, retrofit and conversion.
- Development of a life cycle vision: including methods to asses cost, safety and environmental impact and tools to assess LCA in maintenance, repair and retrofit.
- Development of a specialized package tools for enabling the involvement of SMEs in eco-innovation.
- Development of eco innovative tools for the use of European yards and SME’s involved in Shipbuilding, Ship Repair & recycling to increase their competitiveness.
- Increment of the level of employment, creating new skills especially in the area of green technologies and improving working conditions.
- Provision of information to “policy makers” on, tools and guidelines to support the development of new requirements for existing fleet.
Press Release, October 4, 2012; Image: enp