Flying on Water
What is AIRCOAT?
AIRCOAT stands for AIR-induced friction reducing ship COATing.
AIRCOAT is a Horizon 2020 EU funded project promoting a passive air lubrication technology with the potential to revolutionise the ship-coating sector.
AIRCOAT air layer:
positive environmental impacts
AIRCOAT technology is aiming to reduce energy consumption and ship emissions, as defined by the EU Green Deal looking to reduce gas emission for the ship industry by 40% by 2030.
The air barrier created by the AIRCOAT foil further limits the attachment of fouling and consequent invasive species translocation.
It will also avoid the release of biocide substances of underlying coatings to the water and mitigate the radiation of ship noise, something that has detrimental effects on marine life such as cetaceans.
The project will help to understand and validate environmentally friendly initiatives within the maritime industry, paving the way for further marine research initiatives that reduce our footprint in the oceans.
Research vessel experiment in Malta 2021
AIRCOAT technology is bio-inspired by the Salvinia effect.
The naturally occurring Salvinia effect allows the plant floating fern to breath under water by maintaining a permanent layer of air around it. The AIRCOAT project intends to implement this effect on a self-adhesive foil system. It is therefore a prime example of a biomimetic application where technology learns from nature.