Filtersafe Develops New UV BWMS Filter

Manta Series: Engineered Ballast Water Filtration Dedicated to UV BWMS

Compact, high-performance, and easy-to-maintain MANTA filters, created in response to market feedback, also receive equivalent series type approval.

 

ISRAEL; 2nd June 2022: Filtersafe, a world leader in automatic seawater filtration, has today announced its new ‘MANTA’ filter series, with the first of the portfolio exhibited at Posidonia 2022 in June.

 

The company’s latest high-performance filter is able to maintain impressive removal rates – 99.6% of organisms over 50 μm – all in a cost-effective package with a small footprint, specifically engineered for UV-based ballast water management systems (BWMS).

 

These organism removal rates ensure that ship owners and operators will be compliant with the International Maritime Organization’s D-2 standard for the implementation of the ballast water management convention, which must be adhered to by 08 September 2024, as well as the U.S. Coast Guard’s (USCG) existing ‘Final Rule for Ballast Water Treatment’.

 

Filtersafe has received an equivalent series type approval from Det Norske Veritas (DNV) and the USCG. As one of the first complete filter redesigns to be approved under the USCG’s Policy Letter (CG-OES 03-20) Guidance on Testing Alternate Components for a Type Approved BWMS, the MANTA reflects one of the first true evolutions in ballast water filtration since the complex and costly testing regimes were mandated. Gaining approval under this policy ensures that customers of the performance-leading BallastSafe filter now have a new, more compact option to add to their BWMS portfolio.

The MANTA filters family

The MANTA features Filtersafe’s new one-motion scanner. This new design removes lateral motion of the scanner, reducing cost and eliminating parts. It features a larger proximity nozzle which is able to clean the filter screen in one continuous motion. When combined with the filter’s unpleated screen, the MANTA has improved cleaning coverage that reaches 100% of the screen.

 

A high-performing filter with scalable automatic self-cleaning technology is particularly important for BWMS operations in challenging water conditions, which is a priority for regulators and ship operators alike. Automatic filter cleaning can be increased when ballasting in sediment-rich waters, including those found in the port of Shanghai, to ensure a consistent flow rate and to avoid costly operational issues such as clogging. Despite being tested with a finer mesh filter, the MANTA outperformed the original BallastSafe design in independent testing of the cleaning, removal rate, and throughput efficiency of the filters.

 

Corrosion prevention remains another key industry pain point. Filtersafe introduced 904L stainless steel across its filter screen supply chain last year and this superior steel is also used in the MANTA series’ sintered screens. In addition, and in order to combat the steady-rising cost of alloy material, Filtersafe, together with its partners, has adopted a new SuperQuenching procedure, borrowed from the space industry, to overcome the material degradation of 316L due to the weaving, sintering, and fabrication process. This allows it to also offer a viable 316L screen option at a lower cost. Improved longevity and superior cleaning reduce maintenance costs and, even when maintenance is required, MANTA is thoughtfully designed to ensure it can safely and efficiently be maintained by one person.

 

Mark Riggio, Head of Marine at Filtersafe, commented: “As requested by leading BWMS manufacturers, we’re pleased to offer Filtersafe performance in a smaller package, designed specifically for UV systems. Having equivalent series type approval already completed makes adopting a MANTA filter a no-brainer for our current customers. The rising challenges posed by sediment-rich water conditions are not going away – and now we have the filter that anyone can use to meet them.”

 

“From a shipowner and operators’ perspective, MANTA is a win in both the CAPEX and OPEX categories. You expect CAPEX costs may be a little more for a high-quality filter, MANTA disrupts that. And our OPEX costs have always been Filtersafe’s strong point. If you have any questions about this or just want to see a MANTA filter, I encourage you to swing by the Filtersafe booth at Posidonia.”

 

Ballast water management is one of the toughest water treatment challenges in the world and demands the best technical solutions. There is sufficient technology and innovative equipment available on the market today to overcome operational challenges and ensure seamless, cost-effective regulatory compliance.

 

Powerful Lessons to Be Learnt From BWMS Operational Data

Ballast water management systems (BWMS) haven’t been the black-box solution that many shipowners had hoped for. They work, but as participants in a webinar hosted by De Nora and Filtersafe heard, there are outside variables that can make them challenging for managers and crew, especially if they don’t have quality equipment and adequate support from manufacturers.

Taking a look at some real-life case studies, the participants in the “What can vessel data tell us about BWMS commissioning & operation?” webinar (see full webinar below) discussed crew training, system commissioning, and striking a balance between power consumption and filter capabilities.

In one case study, crew operating their system for the first time found that while the portside pumping system worked as expected, the starboard system sounded the differential pressure alarm and shut itself down. Initially suspected to be a filter backflushing problem, the true cause lay in the design of the piping. This was only picked up by careful analysis of the system’s data logs by Filtersafe personnel who were then able to propose a workaround to the crew.

Why wasn’t this picked up during system commissioning? Sometimes both port and starboard pumps are not run simultaneously during commissioning – sailing schedules and crew availability can lead to such risks being taken.

In another case study, the crew complained that the filters were backflushing all the time – and the crew suspected that the culprit was the challenging waters in which the vessel was ballasting – but that ultimately wasn’t the cause of the problem. Rather, after manual cleaning, the filter was being reassembled incorrectly causing premature component wear. A further look at the data logs revealed another problem – an undersized airflow line. The problem was subsequently fixed on the vessel and also other vessels in the fleet.

It’s important that crews do not continually resort to bypassing systems. This would endanger the environmental objectives that ballast water treatment systems are designed to prevent: the spread of harmful aquatic organisms. One compliance issue which was highlighted is the proliferation of organisms in the ballast tanks, and therefore the criticality of emptying and cleaning the tanks regularly.

As an equipment manufacturer, De Nora provides intelligence and support to ship managers to monitor operations and avoid any issues that might frustrate crews. Furthermore, De Nora can help optimize power usage and reduce power consumption when ballasting in less-challenging conditions. This can be achieved regardless of treatment technology (UV or electrochemical dosing) and it can be done without risking schedules or compliance with D-2 standards.

Ballast water manufacturers, operators, and regulators have collected a lot of data so far during the experience-building phase of the regulations. It’s important to leverage this data to make sure shipowners – and regulators – can be confident that systems are working as intended when onboard a ship, and to make sure that ballast water rules have the positive environmental impact they were designed for.

The biggest takeaway from this data is that quality pays. Working collaboratively with quality, expert partners, and installing the highest quality systems is the best way to reduce operating costs, save time for both ship operators and crew, and deliver compliance.

Installing a cheap, low-quality system – where suppliers are not acting as technical partners – means buying twice, with almost certain costly failures and no tools to rectify them. And the ramifications of this will only become more extreme as ballast water is more heavily policed in the years to come.

And let’s not forget why ballast water treatment is so important! While significant attention is being given to finding effective solutions to the industry’s decarbonization challenge, the risks of invasive species remain real and dramatic. As we strive for a more sustainable future for shipping, environmental stewardship requires taking responsibility for both water and air alike.

Here is the full webinar with division in the chapters for your convenience:
[su_youtube url=”https://youtu.be/1ortJlXRKrw”%5D

Filtersafe’s Smartweave Screen: Water Filtration at a Whole New Level

The heart of any filtration system is the screen. It is the barrier that keeps downstream systems protected, ballast water free from invasive species, and RO membranes safe from upstream contaminants.

Filtersafe’s patented filtration technology all started with a vision to engineer a dedicated seawater durable filter that could handle filtration of microscopic organisms without letting the microscopic organisms through or clogging. After years of R&D our engineers created our unique smartweave screen, utilizing a patented manufacturing and sintering process that places our screen leaps and bounds above the alternatives.

By using a combination of weave wire filtration screens, protective screens, and a reinforcement layer, the innovative, highly effective screen filters out sediment and microorganisms, providing invaluable filtration support no matter where it’s installed.

Why It’s Important

As the heart of a filter, the screen provides two key benefits that make or break the functionality of the filter – it’s ability to filter out particles down to the designated micron and its ability to work without clogging.

wedge wire candle filter with debrisIf a filter can’t be trusted to filter down to the required micron level, many problems can occur. In an industry such as ballast water filtration, allowing organisms in the ballast tank can cause a ship to be in non-compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s D-2 regulations, and result in heavy fines for shipowners. In agriculture, it can result in sediment getting through to the drip irrigation lines and clogging the pipes and nozzles, resulting in expensive maintenance. Every filter request comes with a request to filter down to a specific micron level because anything bigger than this size will cause problems downstream. It’s imperative that end users can trust that their filters are filtering down to the level requested.

The second issue, clogging, is deeper than just the screen stopping because of a clog. Clogging can also refer to any unexpected reduction in the filter’s flow rate, which can cause cascading problems. Firstly, many filters clean based on the concept of differential pressure – that is the pressure inside of the filter is higher than that outside and this difference in pressure triggers the screen to be cleaned. If the screen cleaning mechanism can’t properly remove the debris building up on it, the buildup of debris can reduce the clear opening of the filter mesh and significantly reduce the flow through the filter. Even before it clogs completely, this phenomenon can reduce flow through the filter by up to 80 or 90%, effectively rendering the filter clogged even though it still can pass the process fluid.

On a cargo ship this reduction in water can slow or even halt the loading or unloading of cargo, as the ship can become dangerously unbalanced as products are moved on and off and there isn’t a respective change in balancing ballast water. The additional time in port not only throws of the ship’s schedule down the line, but can result in expensive additional docking fees while in port. In many industrial applications a clogged filter can simply shut down the process its involved in – in a food production facility this means stopping production, but if the filter is involved in a HVAC/cooling tower application, the particles that aren’t filtered out can cause corrosion within the system, or even more dangerous cause the system to overheat and shutdown as the vital cooling water isn’t being provided.

Now that we understand how important a properly functioning screen is to various industries, let’s learn more about how Filtersafe’s smartweave screen works.

How It Works

The basis for Filtersafe’s smartweave screens is our exclusive weave-wire mesh layer. This is the layer that determines the micron level down to which the filter filters, and can range anywhere from 10-500 microns, depending on the application. In order to enhance the strength of the screens (and we’ll see below flimsy screens are a real problem), the mesh layer is covered on either side by a protective layer. In addition, on the outside of the screen is an additional perforated reinforcement layer, for enhanced durability.

Filtersafe's 4 layer sintered screen

In order to keep the 4 layers compact and without rubbing (which can lead to wear and tear of the individual layers and compromises the filtration integrity and can also encourage corrosion within the filter screen) we have a unique sintering process, which allows our 4 layer screen to be less than 3 mm thick. The combination of the unique use of weave wire along with the additional protective layers also gives us an unrivaled effective screen area. This means that smartweave screens are able to trap a huge amount of particles while still maintaining a high flow rate (all within a small footprint). Lastly, Filtersafe is able to offer its proprietary screen technology in several different stainless-steel varieties including – 316L, 904L, and SMO254, depending on application requirements.

What is Sintering

Sintering entails heating elements of the 4 layers so that the metals of each layer bond together, without the use of any bonding agent or other external materials, and without actually melting the metal. Sintering produces a secure, reliable bond between the layers, and is especially suited to wire mesh, as it allows each wire to be securely attached in place at the same time. This is especially important as the numerous strands of wire can easily become loose and start fraying if not properly secured together – threatening the integrity of the filtration element cut point.

A Closer Look At Other Screens

The smartweave screen technology especially stands out when compared to the other screen technology options available. Let’s see how smartweave compares to the competition.

Floating weave wire vs smartweave sintered

Floating weave wire screens are similar to our smartweave screens in that they both contain weave wire and therefore have exceptionally high open area and higher flow rates than other screen options, while trapping 8 times more organic matter than wedge wire filters – however the similarities end there. Floating weave wire screens are a popular choice as they are much cheaper to manufacture than our sintered alternative, and therefore cheaper to buy. However, the cost savings in the short term quickly result in expensive problems for buyers.

The screens are called ‘floating’ because the screen layers aren’t sintered together and a cross-section looks like they are floating atop one another. Each layer of the Floating weave wire screens needs to be more robust because it can’t rely on the strength it neighboring layers which leads the overall width of the screen to be 12 mm thick or more with the actual fine filtration layer (working mesh) placed further away from the surface of the screen and the gap between the inner protection mesh and the working mesh can be 2.5mm or more allowing high slippage flows when being cleaned. Alternatively, smartweave screens are only 3mm thick with the working mesh being only 0.5mm away from the inner protection mesh. This increased thickness between the layers can make it harder for nozzles to properly clean the screen (an issue discussed in greater depth in our article about our patented nozzlex technology). Aside from the problems their thickness can cause with cleaning, as the screen layers ‘float’ they can move with changes in pressure within the filter, rubbing against each other. This can cause two problems – corrosion from the steel rubbing and reduced integrity of the weave wire layer which puts the filtration degree in jeopardy. Just one small hole in a screen changes the filtration degree of the entire screen.

Candle filters vs weave wire

Candle filters get their name from the long, tubular shape of the filter. These types of filters are normally wedge wire and rely on metal barriers to filter water and are cleaned through backflushing. While theoretically candle filters are supposed to be able to filter to a finer degree, the backflushing process can allow fine particles to come through. Unlike precision nozzles which suck off debris at the point of nozzle contact, backflushing reverses the flow of water to clean and the force of the reversed flow can weaken the filter’s welds over time,  reducing the durability of the filter. In addition, when fine filtration is required, the open area and porosity of the filter decrease dramatically, resulting in a much lower flow rate.

As discussed above, because smartweave screens are sintered, the layers of the screen don’t rub together, resulting in enhanced durability.  Weave wire screens can also be used on-line or in-line, while candle filters can only be in-line. Weave wire screens also have up to 6 times the open area of wedge wire, resulting in a higher flow rate that can be incredibly valuable if time is of the essence (such as when you are trying to fill up a ballast tank while unloading cargo, or are filtering water at a desalination plant for hundreds of thousands of people). Lastly, while more superficial, weave wire screens tend to leave water looking cleaner, even with larger filtration degrees.

Screen vs sand filters

Sand filters are one of the oldest technologies that are still in use. Sand filters are a common choice when the user wants to remove suspending particles and don’t require a high flow rate. They can be economical choices, but overall, have many cons when compared to automatic screen filters. The table below gives a clear overview on the benefits automatic screen filters have over sand filters.

FeatureSand FilterFiltersafe Filter
Size

Big

Compact

External Backwash Pump

Needed

Not needed

Blower

May be Necessary

May be Necessary

Clean water for Backwash

Needed

Not needed

Filtration Degree

25 microns and above (Unless chemical is used)

25 microns and above (Unless chemical is used)

Downtime for Backwash \ Flushing

10 to 20 minutes. System isolated for backwashing unless with
standby unit.

Flushing doesn’t affect system flow.

Approximately 30 seconds for full recovery.

Amount of Backwash water

Easily 6% of total flow

Less than 1% of total flow

Media Replacement

Yes

Not needed

Chemical Use

Yes, to achieve fine filtration

No chemical use

 

Let smartweave Filter For You

smartweave works to its full potential when paired with our nozzlex proximity nozzles, and results in our EVERCLEAR automatic filtration cycle technology. The EVERCLEAR autonomous self-cleaning filtration cycle works with low operating pressure, minimal water for flushing, and is NOT a backwashing sequence, for 100% screen cleaning every cycle.

New Executive For Filtersafe Marine Division

Mark Riggio

Filtersafe Proudly Announces New Head of Marine, Mr. Mark Riggio 

Filtersafe today announced that Mr. Mark Riggio will be joining the company as the Head of the Marine Division, effective the 3rd of August. Mark will be leaving Hyde Marine, where he was the Senior Market Manager for over 9 years.

Mark brings with him to his new role his vast experience in the maritime industry, which will only serve to benefit the continued growth of Filtersafe’s efforts as a marine filtration expert and marine equipment supplier. His perspective on the maritime industry is unique, and one that few others can offer, as he has voyaged through the three distinct and critical parts of the maritime landscape: Classification, Port & Fleet Management, & BWTS Designer and Manufacturer. He brings a wealth of knowledge to his position at Filtersafe including:

  • A rigorous understanding of the standards involved in the marine industry from his time as a Senior Surveyor at the American Bureau of Shipping, where he oversaw hundreds of surveys and equipment installations stretching over four continents, and co-wrote the book on the ballast water regulations.
  • A deep insight into the needs of the most important stakeholder in this industry – the fleet owners/managers. The 6 years spent as a Port Engineer and Fleet Manager put him in the same waters as the end clients that he now works with.
  • Comprehensive view and experience of the ballast water industry from inside a market juggernaut, Hyde Marine, where he was the Senior Market Manager for over 9 years.

Filtersafe is thrilled to have a marine industry icon like Mark join the company in his new Senior Executive role. “I couldn’t be more excited about this opportunity,” says Mark. “Filtersafe is poised not only to be the dominant player in the ballast water filtration market but they also have the personnel and product portfolio to tackle the broad range of challenges that ships face with contaminants in their process waters. Ballast water treatment is only the leading edge of this opportunity.”

“With Mark joining Filtersafe’s leadership team, we are reinforcing our commitment to deliver quality products and services to not only the BWT segment but the wider Marine industry,” says Miyan Mears-Dagan, COO at Filtersafe. “We have full confidence in Mark and his unique qualities to bring us to new heights.”  

 

About Filtersafe: A leader in the Ballast water filtration industry, that specializes in high capacity filtration. Filtersafe boasts over 3000 successful installations of its systems in a wide range of vessels. Filtersafe brings unrivaled value, effectiveness, and durability to even the most demanding filtration solutions.

COVID-19 Virus (Coronavirus) Statement

To Our Valued Customers and Partners,

During this time of unprecedented uncertainty, all of us here at Filtersafe are concerned about the safety and well-being of our families, colleagues, customers, partners, as well as the entire Filtersafe global family.

Our hearts are with those who have been affected personally by the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) as well as the many communities around the world that are facing extreme measures in the attempt to slow its spread.

In today’s challenging environment, we want to provide you more information as to how we are continuing to operate at all premises and doing our best to ensure our customers are served.

  • Our customers & employees are our top priority.
  • We are still taking orders and providing supply: our head office and our Hong Kong operations are continuing business.
  • We are still providing support as always. 

Filtersafe is fully committed to ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of our employees. This is our top priority to maintain the business continuity needed to provide the support and service you rely on.

Filtersafe management has put the following measures in place to ensure the continuation of our working operations while safeguarding the health of our employees and minimizing the impact on the delivery of services to you:

Company Assurance for Customers

  • Working Remotely: For the majority of teams, work can be conducted through remote connections, which enables teams to work off-site for most tasks. Engineers around the globe are working separately and remotely where possible to mitigate the risk of an entire team becoming infected. Employees who must be on-site are applying social distancing and hygiene protocols based on guidance from health authorities and our Global Pandemic Task Force.
  • Safety On-Site: Where on-site work is required, staff who are on-site to accomplish specific tasks are spending only the minimum time required in locations. Additionally, teams have implemented rotating schedules to reduce the number of people in a single location and to separate individuals in common teams as much as possible. Filtersafe has also provided gloves and masks for the protection of on-site workers.
  • Initiating split-team options and select staff segregation for business-critical roles/functions.
  • Cancellation or postponement of physical events until further notice, and evaluating which events will be delivered as a virtual experience.
  • Restricting all employee travel.

Company Guidance to Employees

  • Filtersafe has established a Global Pandemic Taskforce, working in tandem with local crisis teams and health authorities, to coordinate all efforts around the COVID-19 situation and provide guidance to Filtersafe staff.
  • Initiating split-team options and select staff segregation for business-critical roles/functions.
  • Cancellation or postponement of physical events until further notice, and evaluating which events will be delivered as a virtual experience.
  • Restricting all employee travel.

With these measures in place, it is our intention that production will be maintained throughout this epidemic to minimize the impact on our customers whilst maintaining the safety of our employees. Thank you for your continued support and we wish good health and safety to all our business partners, their employees, and families.