How it Works & Purchase Details
Clean Ships, Clean Seas
Ultraguard is a high-quality ultrasonic antifouling system (UAS) that offers the commercial and recreational markets a more sustainable, ecologically-friendly, and effective solution to managing marine growth. Ultraguard is designed and manufactured in Scotland, ensuring the highest quality workmanship and is covered by a 2-year warranty against defects and component failures.
An alternative to hull cleaning and scraping, Ultraguard keeps your hull and other important components clean and free from marine growth. Marine growth increases drag and fuel consumption, which increases operating costs and negatively impacts the environment. Antifouling bottom paint is a known pollutant and the cost to maintain it can be substantial. Furthermore, it is nearly impossible to control marine growth in sea chests and box coolers, which can result in decreased performance of your vessel. Not only will an Ultraguard Antifouling System reduce your operating costs, it is also better for the environment and marine life.
How it Works
The seas and waterways contain a suspended microbiome of larvae and seed which will become marine growth.
To colonize and grow, these larvae require the correct conditions. Sunlight, salinity, water current, and temperature are all required to be at optimum levels.
If all the criteria are correct and there is a suitable stable surface to attach themselves to, the larvae will colonize that surface and start to develop into marine growth.
Ultraguard Antifouling uses pulses of ultrasonic sound at specific frequencies to induce a resonance response in the surface to be protected. This causes the surface to vibrate.
By causing the protected surface to vibrate slightly at the correct frequencies, Ultraguard creates a sub optimal environment, which, prevents the larvae from attaching to and colonizing the surface.
Keeping a ship’s hull free of marine growth in this manner drastically reduces drag on the hull. This reduces fuel consumption, greenhouse gas emissions and ultimately reduces the vessel’s operating costs.
Click Here to Expand Ultraguard Antifouling Technical Description
Water contains a microbiome of various species of larvae in suspension that will attach themselves to marine structures and surfaces if the conditions allow. These larvae require a number of environmental criteria to be in an optimum state to allow them to begin the colonization process. These criteria include water temperature, salinity, light levels, time of year, concentration of larvae and seed in the water. These along with other criteria can affect colonization depending on the species and type of growth. A suitable surface to attach to is also essential.
The purpose of Ultraguard is to use ultrasonic sound waves to create a resonance in the structure which causes a vibration in the surface being protected. This, in turn, becomes a sub-optimal location for the colonization process to begin. This vibration can only prevent the colonization at the larval stage. Mature growth creates bonds that are too strong to be affected by the vibrations. To this end, ultrasonic antifouling systems can only keep a clean surface clean, they can not clean a heavily fouled surface.
It sounds like a simple process but acoustically there are many challenges to overcome, especially on complex structures such as coolers. It is the research and development that MGPS and its partners have undertaken that sets Ultraguard apart from the competition.
In the control panel, each transducer has its own control board and power supply. These generate ultrasonic acoustic signals which are then boosted via an amplifier and sent down the cable to the transducer. The transducer is attached to the structure being protected by an adhesive bond. It is essential that there is always full surface to surface contact between the transducer head and the protected structure. This is why Ultraguard chooses the bonding method over methods such as a screw in mounting ring, welded or attached to the surface. In that method the ultrasonic waves can loosen the transducer in the mounting ring.
By causing each transducer to resonate at the correct frequency Ultraguard induces the required vibrations which prevent the larvae from attaching themselves to the surface being protected.
Ultraguard’s design means that if a transducer cable, power supply or control PCB is damaged or fails it can be swapped out by ship’s staff in a matter of minutes. The rest of the system can operate as normal until the replacement takes place so there is minimum downtime and minimum loss of antifouling effect.
The UG commercial ultrasonic antifouling range from Ultraguard Antifouling is the world’s premier next generation ultrasonic antifouling system. The UG range incorporates a modular design to allow quick and pain free replacement of parts by ship’s staff so as to avoid the need for expensive short side technicians. Advanced onboard memory and reprogramming functions. Robust and reliable, Ultraguard’s UG range is entirely designed and manufactured in the United Kingdom to the highest standards.
Please contact us prior to ordering so we can ensure the correct products are ordered for your commercial application.
Ultraguard Antifouling Commercial Packages
Frequently Asked Questions
Does Ultraguard work?
Yes. The principles of ultrasonic antifouling are well established. Ultraguard has refined these and built them into a system suitable for the commercial marine market. Ultrasonic Antifouling Systems (UAS) work just as well as other modern forms of antifouling.
Do I have to dry dock my ship to fit Ultraguard?
No. Ultraguard antifouling systems can be fitted whilst the vessel is afloat. There’s usually no cutting or penetrations required. All the components are fitted on the dry side of the hull, coolers or pipework.
Is Ultraguard environmentally friendly?
Yes. 100%. Ultraguard emits no pollutants into the marine eco system. Even our packaging is eco-friendly.
How much does ultrasonic antifouling cost?
Each Ultraguard antifouling system is custom specified to each individual vessel or structure so each installation has a different cost. What we can say is that fitting an Ultraguard system to your vessel costs less than the alternatives and will save you a considerable sum over the vessel’s lifetime. We recommend you speak to one of our dealers or agents who can walk you through the process and give you an idea of costs.
Does Ultraguard adversely affect marine mammals?
No. We do ongoing testing to ensure that the ultrasonic sound waves are not at a frequency or pressure that adversely affects whales and dolphins.
Can I fit Ultraguard myself?
Yes. Many of our customers choose to have the Ship’s crew fit the system. We provide full instructions, including videos, to all customers.
Will ultrasonic antifouling work on my vessel?
Ultraguard will work on any solid metal or composite hull, pipe or component. It does not work on wooden hulls. If your vessel has a foam or wood cored GRP sandwich construction, then a section of the inner skin and core needs to be removed and the gap built up with solid GRP to enable the transducer to emit ultrasonic waves to the outer shell.
Do I still need to use antifouling paint if I fit Ultraguard?
You will still need to protect the hull with a suitable protective coating. Ultrasonic Antifouling doesn’t protect against metallic corrosion or GRP osmosis. We would always recommend a non-biocidal coating on environmental grounds. Ultraguard can extend the lifespan of underwater coatings by keeping them free from growth.
Does Ultraguard Antifouling come with a warranty?
Yes. All Ultraguard products come with a two year warranty against defects or component failures.
Where is Ultraguard Antifouling made?
Ultraguard is designed and manufactured in the Central Belt of Scotland with components mostly sourced from around the UK and Europe.
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