One of the key factors affecting ship performance, particularly fuel consumption and associated GHG (Green House Gas) emissions, is the degree of biofouling on the immersed hull and propeller(s). Rates of biofouling accumulation vary considerably, depending on the suitability, age and physical condition of the coating system(s) applied to the hull, the voyaging, anchoring and lay up patterns of the ship, and the geographical regions where these take place.
Ballast water carried by ships keeps them upright during loading and offloading operations and provides balance, stability, and trim during sailing. Because ballast water is loaded from the surrounding port or coastal waters, organisms in the ballast water sometimes establish populations resulting in biological invasions, which may have severe ecological or economic impacts. This standard is designed to test the effect of long-term accelerated exposure of treated water on coating systems.