As green regulations continue to kick in, the rush to retrofit is on. The difference between riding the green wave into the future, or struggling to catch up, can be as simple as choosing the right partner.
“Urgency has set in among our customers,” says Maarten Jeronimus, VP Goltens Europe and responsible for Goltens Worldwide Green Technologies. “Whether it’s exhaust cleaning or ballast water management, they know there’s no way around compliance. But so many have waited to make their moves that the retrofit bottleneck has become a reality too.”
In order to offer their customers a faster track to compliance, Jeronimus says Goltens has been ramping up their retrofit capacity on exhaust cleaning and ballast water treatment systems. “For the past year or so, we have been adding resources to ensure capacity when the orders come in. We have been investing in hardware, software, personnel, and developing our expertise.”
As a result, Jeronimus maintains that Goltens’ average time spent on delivering an engineering package is less than the competition. “We don’t aim to be the cheapest, but we do it right the first time. And we are not just a company that connects the pipes. We have in-depth knowledge of the systems, so we can also optimise solutions or solve problems as needed.”
The proven high accuracy of their engineering work allows Goltens to reduce the time needed in drydock. “This is of course a big concern for owners. With our scanning and detailed design, Goltens, or the shipyard, can prefab the necessary structural and piping changes. With as much as possible prepared in advance, only the necessary work is done in drydock. The rest we can do while the ship is sailing. Basically we do everything possible to reduce drydock time. Our crew is flexible to sail with the ship, anywhere in the world.”
On shore, Goltens generally has a station close to the ship owner or manager, allowing them to communicate in the same time zone. “Efficient communications with owners and operators is a priority with us,” says Jeronimus. “Having local staff means we are familiar with local cultures as well, including manufacturers. We can get the necessary information quickly, just by making a local call.”
Goltens was one of the earliest players on design and installation of green tech systems. “We’ve been there from very beginning, so we have actually had quite some time to prepare for the wave and gain a lot of experience in dealing with all parties involved in these projects.”
As one of the few truly global companies with strategically located facilities around the world, Goltens can quickly deploy resources from any of their different locations to a given job. At over 1,000 employees and growing, with 22 stations in 14 countries around the world, Goltens is one of few global players that can offer such service, Jeronimus says.
“We can also prefabricate pipes and other structures, without depending on subcontractors.” Availability of fabrication capacity for highly accurate piping is going to be a bottleneck, Jeronimus says. But Goltens can offer this service to its customers, not only for steel pipes but also for more exotic materials such as Ceramic coated steel pipes, Cunifer and Glassfibre Reinforced Epoxy (GRE) pipes. “We consider this to be a big advantage as it reduces uncertainties in the entire process.”
Goltens has now completed, or is in the process of completing, 435 ballast water retrofit projects around the globe, ranging in scope from 3D scanning and modelling to turnkey installations of systems, and boasts an impressive order book of engineering packages for more than 100 additional vessels.
Confirming their position atop the onrushing green wave, Goltens Worldwide Green Technologies division Asia recently announced contracts with NYK Bulk & Projects Carrier Ltd and BW Fleet Management for support in retrofitting a total of 37 vessels with BWT systems. Goltens Green Technologies in Europe has also secured an additional order for more than 50 shipsets from an unnamed owner in the late Fall of 2018.
On the sulphur emissions control side, Goltens has completed or is in the process of completing 75 scrubber and LSMGO conversion projects and has been contracted to assist with the engineering of 50 out of 100 scrubbers ordered by Newport Shipping Group in a deal targeting shipowners looking for turnkey retrofits. Several fleet agreements have also been signed, adding up to 30 more scrubber projects. Goltens will provide 3D scanning as well as services such as design, prefabrication and installation for partial or full retrofits while vessels are in service.
“For both scrubbers and BWT systems, the orderbook is growing. 2019 will be very busy, especially since we will continue to develop the group,” Maarten Jeronimus confirms.
“We are building Goltens Green Technologies to be in for the long run, and that means cultivating long-term relationships. Shipowners can count on the fact that Goltens is going to be around to deliver a wide range of specialised services for many decades to come, not just for the installation of BWT systems or scrubbers. We will be there to serve them long after the green wave has subsided.”