BWT launched in IMR flagship for sustainable water treatment

To eliminate any kind of invasive species, the Dr Fridtjof Nansen can affect on surrounding environment, the Institute of Marine Research (IMR) has selected a ballast water treatment (BWT) system developed by Optimarin for use on its new flagship.

The system, already installed on 180 vessels will ensure the NOK 450 million (USD 73 million) newbuild inactivates marine organisms transferred through ballast tanks, examined by scientific methods helping to safeguard the ecosystems.

Owned by the Norwegian Foreign Aid Directorate (Norad) and operated by the IMR, the research vessel is a ST-369 design under construction at a shipyard in Spain currently.

The vessel is expected to be completed in 2016.


The Dr Fridtjof Nansen, a major vessel has been provided with a proven BWT solution with a track record of efficiency and successful elimination of all invasive marine organisms. All the newbuilds need to be confirmed with requirements and operate in accordance to the highest standards, said, Ceferino Ron, factory director, Astilleros Gondan shipyard, Spain.

Optimarin’s system utilises filtration and high doses of UV irradiation to inactivate organisms ad it is an environmentally friendly solution with IMO approval, US Coast Guard’s Alternate Management System (USCG AMS) acceptance and certification through DNV GL, BV, RMRS, and CCS.

IMR recognizes that around ten billion tons of untreated ballast water transported is posing threat to marine biodiversity annually.

Sustainability, environmental stewardship and responsible operations are essential for the mission and BWT solution will help to achieve these goals to an extent.

The newbuild Dr Fridtjof Nansen comprises a total of seven laboratories and 32 cabins. Key operations will include assignments relating to the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries (EAF) and the Nansen program for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).