The Antifouling coating can be used in marine equipment, boat hulls, unmanned underwater vehicle hulls, and pipes, to prevent microorganisms, macroorganisms, plants, barnacles and algae from attaching to a surface. Accumulation of these organisms on a surface cause increased drag and increased weight which can damage or slow down underwater equipment. At SurfTec we have developed a permanent coating that reduces fouling by 80%
Figure 1. Schematic of SurfTec’s antifouling coating. In our studies, yeast was selected as a foulant and static yeast adsorption experiments were performed. Yeast mimics the type of fouling that would be found in marine environments. Biofouling was assessed by three different methods: agar plate method, UV-spectroscopy and laser confocal microscope. The amount of adsorbed yeast on the surfaces is shown in Figure 1. The results show that yeast has readily attach to stainless steel. However, after the surface was modified using SurfTec’s coating, 80% percent lower yeast accumulation was found over a period of 24 hrs.
The coating offers a thin light weight permanent coating that requires no replenishing and is designed to allow sufficient corrosion protection necessary to last numerous overhaul cycles.
Figure 2. EPDM rubber and SurfTec modified EPDM rubber were exposed to dyed yeast to examine biofouling of the surface. In this study it was found that the SurfTec modified EPDM rubber exhibited a 95% reduction in fouling. These exceptional results have not been observed in other permanent coatings.