Improved Watercraft Coatings – Phase II

NCMS Project #: 142055

Problem: Maintenance of commercial, cruise ships, and personal pleasure crafts is extremely important to personnel safety as well as protecting goods being transported and passengers booking days, weeks, and months on board ships.  Coatings that can better protect the hull, prevent fouling, barnacle and debris adherence, and reduce erosion and corrosion will increase the efficiency of routine maintenance tasks as well as lower the number of scheduled maintenance activities and dry dock visits.

Benefit: Developing high-performing watercraft coatings will benefit military, commercial, and personal watercraft by reducing overall maintenance and sustainment costs.

Solution/Approach: Phase I validated improved coatings for interior ship use and identified paths forward for anti-fouling coatings that operate at high speeds and those that resist abrasion.  During Phase II of this initiative, environmentally friendly alternatives to ablative coatings that remain effective over long periods when operating at the range of operational tempo will be investigated.  The objective of this initiative is to identify, develop and demonstrate coatings that improve the lifetime, efficacy, and ease-of-use of watercraft coatings.

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Discourage organic materials from attaching to hulls 
  • Reduce drag coefficient and make the watercraft more fuel efficient 
  • Speed consistency can be maintained 
  • Decrease hull related maintenance and sustainment costs 
  • Improve durability
  • Safer for the ecosystem
  • Increase fleet and warfighter readiness 

DOD Participation:

  • U.S. Army Ground Vehicle Systems Center (GVSC) Materials Directorate
  • U.S. Army TACOM Watercraft Inspection Branch

Industry Participation:

  • PPG Industries, Inc.
  • NCMS

Benefit Area(s):

  • Cost savings
  • Repair turn-around time
  • Maintenance avoidance and reliability
  • Positive environmental impact
  • Safety
  • Maintenance management improvement
  • Improved readiness
  • Durability
  • Reliability improvement

Focus Area:

  • Coatings/corrosion prevention