Laboratory for Freshwater, Marine Research  


actual projects
Project 'CLEAN' - Underwater Cleaning for Professional Shipping

Performed Projects
List of Projects
HAI-TECH Project
Mobile techniques for leisure boat hull cleaning
Antifouling biocides in German coastal & inland waters - How reliable are exposure prognoses of EU scenario models for marinas?
Foulprotect – Fouling Prevention and Protection of Bio-Corrosion for the Maritime Industry
Project of cleaning leisure boats 2012 – 2014
Testing of mobile cleaning tools on hulls of leisure boats
Survey on the Practice with Antifouling Coatings in Marinas of Lower Saxony

List of publications

Project 'CLEAN' - Underwater Cleaning for Professional Shipping

Since 2018 a project consortium composed of representatives of the Environment Department of Bremen, of the ports management company bremenports, of the Coast Guard of Lower Saxony, of the Federal Agency of Shipping, of raw material suppliers for paint companies, of the Polar Institute Bremerhaven, of the shipping company Laeisz, of diving and cleaning companies, and LimnoMar performs a research project on underwater cleaning of ship hulls. The project focuses on three topics:

Demonstration of practicability and efficacy of underwater cleaning of ships hulls coated with non-toxic, abrasion resistant coatings

Demonstration of collection and filtration techniques/systems for the removed fouling organisms with respect to water quality and introduction of invasive species

Drafting of application requirements for permissions of underwater hull cleaning and propeller polishing

There are a couple of documents introducing the project, participating vessels, treated coatings, and legislative aspects.

Project Description

Participating vessels



Dolphin S


Cleaning trials-Bremerhaven

Report DG Diving

Water contaminatin by underwater cleaning

Taxonomy of Fouling Community

Application and Permission Requirements

An essential task of the project was the drafting of basic requirements for permissions to clean vessels hull. Application forms and standards were reviewed and compiled, mainly based on those used in Malta and South Africa. Conditions, standards and a proposal for an application form were drafted and can be downloaded.

Conditions and definitions of propeller polishing

Conditions and definitions of underwater cleaning

Application form, draft

Relevant Publications

Under the heading relevant publications we compiled references on the following issues:

Overviews on underwater cleaning techniques actually in use

Strategies of pro-active and re-active cleaning


Bohlander, J. (2009): Review of options for in-water cleaning of ships. MAF Biosecurity New Zealand Technical Paper No: 2009/42, 38 pp.

Tribou, M., Swain, G. (2010): The use of proactive inwater grooming to improve the performance of ship hull antifouling coatings, Biofouling, 26:1, 47-56.

MARAD (2012): In-water hull cleaning summary report. US-DOT-Maritime Administration, 50 pp.

Morrisey, D.; Woods, C. (2015): In-water cleaning technologies: Review of information. MPI Technical Paper No: 2015/38, 54 pp.

Zabin, C., Davidson, I., Ruiz, G. (2016): In-water vessel cleaning: current and emerging technologies,associated risks, and management options for Hawaii. 62 pp.

Curran, A., King, E., Lowe, C., O’Connor, B. (2016): Analyzing the Current Market of Hull Cleaning Robots, WPI, 82 pp.

Watermann, B. (2018): Reinigung statt Antifouling. Schiff & Hafen, 4, 18 – 19.

Watermann, B. (2019): Hull performance management and biosecurity by cleaning. Ship & Offshore, 1, 18 – 19.

Tamburri, M. (2019): Evaluation of Subsea Global Solutions In-Water Cleaning and Capture Technology for Ships. ACT/MERC IWCC Evaluation Report ER01-19, 3, 61 pp.

IMO-Biofouling Management Plan

Annual Vessel Reporting Form

Biosecurity risks associated with in-water and shore-based marine vessel hull cleaning operations

Chris Scianni and Eugene Georgiades, (2019): Vessel In-Water Cleaning or Treatment: Identification of Environmental Risks and Science Needs for Evidence-Based Decision Making