Retrofit demand keeps Erma First order book at buoyant levels

by | 9th November 2022 | Shiprepair & Maintenance - News, Shiprepair

Home News Retrofit demand keeps Erma First order book at buoyant levels
Retrofit Erma First

Greek ballast water treatment system supplier, Erma First, reports that 2022 has been a “real success” for the company. Over the first nine months of the year it has dispatched over 1000 systems, the majority being retrofit projects.

Panagiotis Dalianis, commercial director, says: “We have experienced high demand in previous years, but as the date for full compliance is approaching fast, clients have continued with at least the same level of demand, and in some cases even higher.”

One of the most challenging projects completed to date this year involved a retrofit to one of the largest vessels operating in the world, for which Erma First had to monitor Total Residual Oxidants (TRO) in very remote tanks from the area where its systems had been installed onboard. This required the company to install and monitor a significant number of TRO sensors locally, receiving measurements from them and controlling the BWTS accordingly.

The past year has not been without its challenges, particularly as a result of lockdown restrictions in China and the impact of the Ukraine-Russia war on energy costs. Nonetheless, Erma First says it has been able to secure the necessary quantities of parts from its suppliers, booking production of major components such as filters, electrolytic cells and transformer rectifiers for the coming months, so that it is in a position to sustain production and meet urgent requests from clients.

Dalianis says: “Despite pandemic related disruptions to the supply chain, we have managed to secure the necessary qualities from our vendors. Where there are certain parts that were experiencing production or delivery delays we have found equivalent replacements. This has assisted in delivering all projects successfully to date.”

In addition to its well-established Erma First Fit BWTS, the company has extended its product range over the past year though the acquisition of the oneTANK system in 2021, and this has proved to be a popular option. According to Dalianis: “OneTANK is one of the smallest and easiest to install ballast water treatment systems, which makes it the ideal solution for any larger vessel’s aftpeak tanks. It is also an optimum solution for smaller vessels with space restrictions, such as tugs, workboats, fishing vessels and superyachts.”

Prospects for the next couple of years appear highly promising, Erma First says, with a number of projects already agreed with shipowners. The company reports it has secured “significant” volumes of orders for delivery in 2023 and 2024 for both the Erma First Fit and oneTANK BWTS.

Erma First has based its systems around the electrolysis approach and the company believes this is one of the reasons for its continued success in the BWTS retrofit marketplace. Dalianis adds: “Developing a system with electrolysis as the base has put us in a very competitive position. In addition, the reliability of the components Erma First technology provides, along with our approach to project management and after sales service support, is well respected by existing customers, who keep returning to us.”

Erma First Fit is also the first BWTS with embedded artificial intelligence, powered by Metis Cyber Technology, which offers users real-time remote BWMS operation monitoring. The machine-learning feature provides key information to the user and allows critical decisions to be made prior to any ballasting/de-ballasting operations. The system also offers the facility for the preparation of Port State Control reporting documentation and intelligent data analysis on the cloud.

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