Aluminum is New Standard for Sustainable Marine Vessel Design

26/11/2021 10:25
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Arksen, a U.K. marine innovation, technology, and adventure company, is partnering with Hydro on an aluminum exploration and research vessel project. Arksen selected aluminum as the key design material for developing a new standard in sustainable marine vessels. The partnership with Hydro provides Arksen with access to low-carbon aluminum and to Hydro’s aluminum expertise.

Arksen 85 Project Ocean

Vessels Made for Research and Exploration

According to Arksen, they build some of the world’s most authentic, capable, and efficient explorer vessels in their class, which are capable of taking adventurers to the most challenging places on the planet. The vessels measure 20-30 m and are designed the ground up, with interior layouts that can be configured for leisure, research, and/or commercial purposes. The company also has concept designs for larger craft to be executed in the near future for explorers who require a larger crew, greater speed, range, load capacity, etc.

“Arksen was created to accelerate the marine industry’s journey towards improved sustainability standards and the development of the world’s largest private research-capable fleet. This is enabled through the activities of the non-profit Arksen Foundation,” said Olly Hicks, executive director of the foundation and a well-known adventurer.

Arksen 85 Project Ocean

Aluminum for the Marine Industry

Hydro will help Arksen to develop cost-effective, sturdy, and efficient solutions for the marine industry. This will support Arksen in achieving their goal of developing a fleet of more-sustainable vessels that are suitable for ocean research and conservation. For this project, Hydro will supply both rolled and extruded marine-grade aluminum. The aluminum is made a combination of recycled process scrap and primary aluminum, offering a low-carbon alternative manufactured using renewable energy.

Hydro entered the partnership early in the project to provide Arksen with insights into optimizing aluminum construction and designing for recycling. The producer will be supplying aluminum wrought products for the vessel that are strong yet light and corrosion-resistant, making them ideal materials for marine applications.

Arksen 85 Project Ocean

“Hydro’s knowledge and experience has enabled us to better understand the material benefits both for the vessel and for the environment,” said Hicks. “We were impressed with how Hydro is working with their partners to deliver smarter solutions and for highlighting what should be the preferred choice in the industry. This is something that we want to help champion as well.”

Hydro Njørdal — a flat rolled alloy (based on 5083) that is stronger and more durable than other aluminum alloys — is being supplied for the project. “Only a small percentage of boats in Europe are recycled,” said David Goddard, Hydro’s U.K. sales manager. “Projects like this Arksen are a step in the right direction for the potential of recycling materials in the marine sector. ”

The first vessel, the Arksen 85 Project Ocean, is being built at the aluminum specialist Wight Shipyard on the Isle of Wight in the U.K. Construction began in October 2020, with completion scheduled for spring 2022. When launched, the vessel plans to undertake cruises for research and conservation as well as make appearances at various marine trade shows in the near future.

Arksen 85 Project Ocean

“Hydro is the aluminum company with the best products and knowledge in marine applications,” said Hilde Kallevig, head of brand & marketing at Hydro. “This partnership with Arksen and their Foundation is part of our collaboration with forward-looking companies moving in a more sustainable direction, to communicate the importance in material selection and design in the global shift towards a more circular economy.”


*Image source: Internet