Alfa Laval PureBallast 3 was the clear choice for Turkish owner vessels
Selecting a ballast water treatment system can be challenging for owners of smaller fleets, who may lack the resources to evaluate all solutions. In Turkey, a group of 52 shipowners overcame this by working together. After extensive investigation, they un
The Turkish decision-making group arose from informal conversations in the local shipping community. Its members – mostly owners of coastal bulk carriers (coasters) with fleets of 1–5 vessels – were concerned about ballast water treatment and what the required system investment would mean for their businesses.
To simplify the evaluation process, the group set up a smaller technical working committee. The committee held more than 40 meetings with 15 suppliers over eight months, sharing findings with the larger group. “We quickly learned so much that we could see some suppliers were not very knowledgeable about ballast water treatment challenges or even related details about their own technologies,” says committee leader Murat Er.
Finding the right technology and system
The group considered 50 different parameters, including technical details related to system performance. Key among them was the choice between electrochlorination (EC) and UV. “We ruled out EC technologies and suppliers very early,” says Cihan Ergenç, another owner within the group. “EC systems produce chlorine, which not only would end up damaging our pipes and our ballast tanks, but eventually you put it back into the ocean. We determined these systems would be a disaster for our ships and bad for the environment.”
Among the UV options, PureBallast 3 quickly stood out. “Alfa Laval was far and away the leader when it came to expertise on ballast water management,” Murat Er explains. “With coasters, we’re travelling mostly in shallower waters, which often means dirtier waters. We had to be absolutely confident in the equipment, and we saw significant technical advantages with PureBallast 3 compared to the other designs we looked at.”
Choosing a supplier for today and tomorrow
Alfa Laval also met criteria related to supplier capabilities, such as installation support and long-term service access. The company’s well-established presence in Turkey, including a PureBallast crew training centre in Istanbul, offered local reassurance. Meanwhile, Alfa Laval’s global strength was proof of reliability. “We had to ask: what will happen 10 years from now?” says Cihan Ergenç, noting that numerous companies have already left the ballast water treatment business. “We had to think about access to spare parts and service. We know Alfa Laval will be there when we need them.”
In the end, the group was unanimous in selecting PureBallast 3. Since then, group members have been grateful for the experience and guidance provided by Alfa Laval during retrofit projects. Speaking of his own retrofit experience, Murat Er says, “Everything went extremely smoothly. Alfa Laval met all of their responsibilities perfectly.”