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An Investigation into the application and practical use of (UV) ultraviolet light technology for marine antifouling

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Serkan TurkmenORCiD, Dr Simon Benson


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© 2020 Elsevier LtdThis paper presents an alternative to conventional antifouling methods through the projection of ultraviolet (UV) irradiation onto submerged surfaces. Tests carried out establish that UV irradiation can effectively prevent biofouling growth on a small scale using commercially available technology with low cost. The demonstration for antifouling purposes also indicates the potential for ultraviolet irradiation to be applied to many different surfaces and diverse applications across the maritime industry. It is demonstrated that intermittent UV can achieve successful antifouling results on submerged surfaces. This significantly increases the design versatility for this antifouling approach, without the need for constant UV exposure there is inherently greater design flexibility for such applications. This suggests the possibility of in-situ UV antifouling systems which can be deployed when vessels are stationary. UV intensity measurements carried out suggest manufacturing variability exists between light emitting diodes (LEDs) of the same specification. The large variation in light intensity observed indicates that devices may perform below the indicated manufacturer's specifications and this could have a detrimental effect on antifouling performance. Results indicate that minor shadowing from direct UV irradiation exposure can impede antifouling performance. Tests indicate prolonged UV LED exposure is likely to result in the photo-degradation of polymer based materials.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ryan E, Turkmen S, Benson S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Ocean Engineering

Year: 2020

Volume: 216

Print publication date: 15/11/2020

Online publication date: 01/09/2020

Acceptance date: 21/06/2020

ISSN (print): 0029-8018

Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


DOI: 10.1016/j.oceaneng.2020.107690


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