During Posidonia 2022, Robban Assafina spoke to leading marine water treatment specialists RWO to find out about the company’s latest products and innovations.  

One product at the forefront of marine technology is the company’s OWS-COM+ smart oily water separator, according to Amir Dolan, Area Sales Manager in Southern Europe and the Middle East at RWO.   

The OWS-COM+ has been specifically designed for vessels operating in remote locations, including unmanned vessels. Already, RWO has delivered 14 OWS-COM+ systems to Ocean Infinity with the systems being installed onboard the Armada fleet of robotic vessels.  

“The Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) used on the OWS-COM+ continuously monitors the process and initiales cleaning cycles within pre-determined parameters,” says Dolan. “Shore-based personnel have easy access to the system via Modbus-Protocol whenever necessary. The oil monitoring device also features its own self-cleaning mechanism.” 

For Ocean Infinity, RWO customised the OWS-COM+ for optimal performance and reliability, Dolan adds. “This was a very special project for RWO which we were proud to be part of.”  

Ensuring Compliance 

Bilge water treatment is a sensitive topic for shipowners, with regulators increasingly vigilant in ensuring that even accidental oil discharges do not occur in restricted areas. RWO is the leading bilge water solution provider in the marine equipment sector and has delivered over 16,000 oily water separators worldwide, each of which helps to protect the marine environment from oil contamination. 

RWO also developed the Clean Bilge Monitor (CBM+) solution specifically to help owners ensure compliance, providing an additional line of defence against unintended contravention of the rules. 

“Shipowners that have experienced issues in the past with oil water separators, are looking for solutions that can offer additional protection, as improper installation and operations can result in penalties,” says Dolan. “The CBM+ gives shipowners peace of mind because, installed right before the overboard discharge line, it offers protection as it simply doesn’t allow the discharge of any liquid not complying to the effluent standards.” 

The CBM+ has been designed to monitor and control liquid discharges overboard to prevent non-compliant oily water mixtures from being discharged. If the system detects that the oil content is above the predetermined limit, it automatically recirculates the liquid back to the bilge water tank. Housed in a tamper-proof box, the CBM+ features a flow meter and GPS system and records the date, time, location, flow rate and oil content of every operation over the last 18 months. Clients are able to access and download this data using the system’s touch screen. 

Dolan explains that the system also features a “Port Switch” which can be used to stop any overboard discharge when as vessel is in port or a restricted area by putting the system into recirculation mode. 

The Middle East Market 

Discussing the maritime industry in the Middle East, Dolan said quality assurance was the top priority for clients in this region. “We have seen increased demand from charterers in Gulf countries asking shipbuilders to install the RWO CBM+ to provide additional protection. Oil water separators are not sophisticated products, but they can cause a lot of problems with improper operation. Clients are looking for reliable, future proof solutions.” 

In June 2021, RWO was acquired by ERMA FIRST and is now part of the ERMA FIRST Group of companies. 

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