May 29, 2014 13:30 UTC

bio-on Bio Polymer Helps the Development of a New Generation of Fouling Control Coatings

BOLOGNA, Italy--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- A new European project within the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Commission started on 1st January 2014. The goal of the SEAFRONT (Synergistic Fouling Control Technologies, Grant Agreement 614034) project is to develop environmentally friendly coatings which prevent the undesirable accumulation of marine organisms on boats, ships, tidal power plants and other aquatic installations. The coatings will be designed to improve operational efficiency, substantially reduce CO2 emissions and have no negative impact on the marine ecosystem.

In order to assess and develop the potential of bio based polymers, bio-on is supplying partners with different grades of bio plastics produced by natural fermentation of agricultural by-products, which are 100% bio based and fully biodegradable in nature. These bio based materials will be investigated and assessed against biofouling efficacy and hydrodynamic drag criteria, successful candidates will then be integrated with other partner’s technologies in an effort to develop a synergistic solution offering optimized performance characteristics.

"We’re extremely pleased to participate in the SEAFRONT European project and to be part of this great and outstanding consortium,” says Marco Astorri, CEO of bio-on “because we are very interested to investigate the potential of our material also in this sector, one of the many in which our biopolymers can be used, and anxious to collaborate in the development of environmentally friendly solutions at 360°.”

The fouling control coatings to be developed within the project will not leach chemical or other harmful substances that are non-biodegradable in the marine environment. In addition, the coatings will reduce the hydrodynamic resistance of ships and boats, decreasing fuel consumption and thus substantially reducing CO2 emissions. Finally, the new coatings will lead to considerable savings in operational costs by improving the efficiency of tidal power installations and reducing the frequency of maintenance and cleaning in off-shore infrastructure and aquaculture applications.

Jacques Joosten, Managing Director of DPI, said of the project: "We are very pleased with the start of SEAFRONT, the third project to be coordinated by DPI within the Seventh Framework Programme. By initiating and coordinating such projects we create added value for our current and future industrial and academic partners."

About the project team - The SEAFRONT project will be implemented within the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) under the Ocean of Tomorrow call. Five multinationals, seven SMEs and seven research institutes spread across eight EU Member States will work together to achieve the goals within the four-year timeframe. DPI is the project coordinator and International Paint Ltd., a business unit of AkzoNobel, will bring any new coatings based on technology developed within the project to the market. In focusing on the delivery of sustainable products and solutions, the goals of this project perfectly complement the strategic ambitions of AkzoNobel.

About BIO-ON - bio-on is an Intellectual Property Company and supplies technology to produce or use PHAs on the basis of a license that restricts use to a particular territory or to a specific business area. Founded in 2007, bio-on designed and patented the first bio plastic PHAs in the world to be 100% naturally biodegradable in water and soil. This outstanding product was created by transforming residues from sugar production, from both beet and cane, using a natural production process without the use of organic chemical solvents. bio-on’s patented bio plastics have extraordinary properties: it is possible to design an infinite range of objects in all fields where traditional plastic is nowadays used. The biodegradability of bio-on’s bio plastics was certified in 2008 by Vinçotte.

Project info
Project title: Synergistic Fouling control Technologies - SEAFRONT
Website: http://seafront-project.eu
Project N°: 514034
Topic: FP7-OCEAN-2013-3: Innovative antifouling materials
EU contribution: €. 7.995.161
Duration 48 months
Start date: 1st January 2014
Project Coordinator: Dr. John van Haare - Dutch Polymer Institute


Marco Astorri, +39 (0)51893001

Source: bio-on