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03 June 2011

Article from the Danish Engineer Magazine.

Only 35 centimeters water is needed for operation of a new Danish vessel for oil recovery. A Danish developed boat with two hulls and two outboard engines can gather oil from oil spills in shallow water where ordinary vessels cannot enter.

The oil catamaran, which is called SWORC (Shallow Water Oil Recovery Catamaran) collects oil using a skimmer, consisting of brushes, storing it in plastic bags. The boat was invented by the Danish ship design company KNUD E. HANSEN and according to the designers it can operate in down to 35 centimeters water depth.

The vessel can be transported by truck in a 20 foot container or on a trailer and has just been put into production at the yard Tuco Marine ApS.

Oil pollution in shallow water can be particularly hard on the animal and plant life: “Out in the deep water, an oil spill on water surface does not affect the bottom because water and oil do not normally mix farther down in the water column than ten meters, the shallow water oil can have harmful effects on mussels, lobster and that sort” said David Boertmann, senior scientist at Danish National Research Environmental Institute (DMU).

At the same time the oil is difficult to clean up when it reaches shore – especially if oil is washed up on rocky ground. The company behind SWORC mentions an oil spill from the Baltic Carrier in the Baltic Sea in 2001 as an example of how difficult it can be to collect oil on shallow water. 1,100 of 2,400 tons of oil leaked from the Baltic Carrier was first smlet up as it reached the shore, which means that 13,300 tonnes of contaminated sand and soil at the same time had to be removed.

Danish catamaran to collect oil in shallow water.

Oil spill near the coast harms both seabed and beach. New Danish vessel picks up where larger ships can not reach.

Read the press release below.


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