Cover photo for Biofouling Solutions to Watch

Biofouling Solutions to Watch

TOOL in partnership with the World Ocean Council announces the Biofouling Solutions To Watch list!

The Ocean Opportunity Lab (TOOL) in partnership with The World Ocean Council (WOC) has mapped the world of biofouling innovators. Now we would like to introduce a special Featured Insight on Biofouling Solutions to Watch where you can learn more about innovators and their solutions!

In this article, you can explore the 20 stakeholders that are successfully battling biofouling and invasive aquatic species and potentially are seeking partners and customers!

Meet the 20 Biofouling Solutions and Companies To Watch!

Biofouling R&D+i Group (Sergio Garcia)

The Biofouling R&D+i Group was created in 1992 and its research is focused on the study of the growth of biofouling and its control, with regard to artificial structures in contact with seawater and to heat exchangers-condensers cooled with seawater. The most noteworthy contributions can be found in journals such as Biofouling, JCT Research, International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation, Water Science and Technology, and Journal of Maritime Research, as well as in numerous international congresses. 

BioMimetx SA (Goncalo da Costa)

Biomimetx has developed a biodegradable antifouling agent to be incorporated in any paint to prevent fouling. BioMimetx SA is a Portuguese Biotech company located in Lisbon, that has discovered and owns bacteria collected from the environment that produce high levels of molecules, which can be used as natural antimicrobials, larvicides, or algaecides. As the first product, BioMimetx S.A. is developing BMX-11, a green antifouling additive to be incorporated in marine paints, for application in hulls, nets or other materials used at Sea. 

CleanSubSea (Peter Maidment)

CleanSubSea's Envirocart System's purpose is to remove marine growth from the hulls of ships (or other subsea infrastructure or installations) without costly and time-consuming dry docking; removing marine growth reduces the fuel consumption of a vessel, and eliminates the potential for spreading unwanted/alien “invasive marine species” into local waters or elsewhere internationally. Whilst the Envirocart itself is completely remotely operated, the Envirocart System also includes hand tools with encapsulated boxes for divers to use to clean niche areas or other zones with difficult access, which also connect to the filtration system to ensure full capture and containment even from these difficult areas. 

EMCS Industries Ltd. (Susan Tasker)

EMCS Industries Ltd. offers an antifouling solution that is a low-frequency acoustic antifouling system dating back to the 1980s. The system does not harm or kill hard fouling organisms; it merely deters them from attaching. The system itself does not protect against or remove soft fouling and does not interfere with any electrolysis or cause harm to steel in ships’ internal seawater systems. Moreover, a big plus of the system is that it can be installed while the vessel is in the water. They are seeking for partners to help them improve the system’s performance and reliability and assess its potential for use in combination with existing and next-generation antifouling solutions. 

fDevices (Christian Bakke)

 fDevices has developed a unique method of removing biofouling, a gentle cleaning technique (low pressure at low flow) designed not to damage the anti-fouling coating on submerged vessels. This method can reduce how often vessels need to be brought into a dry dock and can be used on parts or whole vessels. The washer is powered by a semi-professional power washer.

Finsulate BV

Finsulate is on a mission to get rid of toxic antifouling. Whereas all antifouling paints contain biocides in some form and mostly also spread microplastics by dissolving the paint binder materials, Finsulate is a game-changer. A non-toxic self-adhesive that prevents fouling based on small fibers/spines.The Finsulate fibers are so close together that organisms cannot get in between. As nature is strong, fouling can occur eventually on top of the fibers. This fouling is easily cleaned off.


GILLS Pte Ltd is dedicated to develop, engineer and market an Air Lubrication System for ships that reduces the resistance of ships by generating micro air bubbles. The layer of air bubbles at the ship hull also reduces the marine growth at the wetted areas in a natural way. GILLS Pte Ltd is located strategically in Singapore and works closely with the Singapore National Biofilm Consortium in the area of natural marine growth reduction. 

HASYTEC Electronics GmbH

The Ultrasound Antifouling Technology “Dynamic Biofilm Protection Intelligent®”, developed by HASYTECgroup, prevents marine growth and biofouling on all liquid-carrying surfaces. Systems and coatings which release biocides and/or heavy metals into the oceans are not contemporary anymore and can be fully replaced in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way. This improves the environment rating of the vessel, reduces the maintenance on board, increases operational and reduces operational expenses. As DBPI® at the same time prevents biocorrosion the lifetime of the protected applications on board will be extended. 

HullWiper Ltd (Simon Doran)

HullWiper is using innovative ROV technology to replace traditional diver and brush methodology to mitigate the risk to the eco-system, hull coatings, and human life. To reduce carbon emissions, boost fuel efficiency and extend the time periods between cleaning through the use of the eco-friendly HullWiper system. 

Hydro Hull Cleaning

Hydro Hull Cleaning offers a revolutionizing underwater hull cleaning ROV that will reduce fuel consumption in the maritime sector substantially and have a positive environmental impact on biodiversity and ecosystems.


NatureMetrics brings the power of genetics to frontline ecology. They use cutting-edge DNA analysis to monitor biodiversity and measure natural capital in the environment. They can uncover multiple species from complex environmental samples in low-cost and repeatable ways. By surveying everything from bats to bacteria, they help understand how to protect and build natural capital through activities such as farming, energy generation, and forestry. 

Nautica Robotics (Cedric Portmann)

Nautica Robotics offers a swarm robotic solution to prevent biofouling from forming on a ship's hull & niches. This is realized by an autonomous swarm of robots always on board the ship, which is used to proactively clean the hull and the niches when the ship is stationary. This saves both time and lowers fuel costs, while significantly reducing CO2 emissions. 

Notilo Plus

Notilo Plus is the company behind iBubble and Seasam, the world's first autonomous underwater drones made for leisure and professional applications. Created by divers and engineers, these drones bring a true revolution to the underwater world. With iBubble, we have designed the first intelligent, user-friendly, and completely autonomous diving drone. With Seasam you can open a whole new world of capturing data underwater. With our customization system, Seasam can be used in many fields while remaining highly specialized, such as autonomous boat hull inspections, payload carrying, search & rescue, acting as a third-eye view for commercial divers, and much more.

Sonihull (Darren Jones)

Sonihull is the choice of many fleets to tackle fouling, future-proof their vessels against upcoming regulation,s and reduce costs. Unlike conventional antifouling systems, Sonihull does not use toxins or ablative coatings that leave microplastic pollution in their wake. Sonihull keeps surfaces clear using ultrasound eliminating single cell organisms, the food source for further growth. Sonihull can be applied to all Internal Seawater Systems, pipe work, pumps, grills, box cooler and sea chests. External and niche areas protected include hulls, propellers, jets, thrusters, etc.

OceanTech Innovation AS (Bernt Schjetne)

OceanTech Innovation AS is a specialized niche company working in the challenging Splash Zone. All of their operations are done from the installation or the wessel itself with a small team. The robots hold on to the structures/hull and can therefore work ''stable'' relative to the working area. Their robots can typically operate in 3m significant wave heights and in heavy currents. Currently, they are searching for partners to access the international market.

Penrhos Bio (Richard Hammond)

Penrhos Bio, a start-up based in the UK offering an eco-friendly and entirely novel active molecule that is effective in preventing multispecies biofilms including algae. They have negotiated exclusive rights to the head-license for the Lactam technology from Unilever and are commercializing the technology in areas where it is beneficial to prevent harmful biofilms. They currently are looking to accelerate the development program through additional targeted funding, as well as the support of a wider network. 

Pinovo AS (Declan Mc Adams)

Pinovo AS is a Bergen based ocean impact company has developed, patented and proven in the market place, clean vacuum blasting surface treatment technology. It stops all Paint Microplastic Emissions entering the Ocean, and reduces CO2 emissions by over 60% compared to traditional open grit blasting, by reusing the grit up to 20 times. The solution’s industrial features are that it provides dustless, safe, ATEX certified, cost efficient blasting with a high quality finish for re-painting. Pinovo’s patented front end tools enable us handle the full range of work scopes, and is ideal for continual maintenance with spot blasting. 

NORSelast AS

The material NORSelast® AF is made by mixing environment-friendly substances with AntiFouling properties in the material while retaining the good mechanical properties of the NORSelast® material. The substances do not adversely affect the environment but prevent the formation of biofilm. The material is used in oil and gas, fishing and farming, shipping and boat, renewable aquaculture energy, seismic, and defense. 

Termanox BV (Stefan Spaas)

Termanox offers a solution called Blueterm®, which is a biodegradable film-forming product that prevents micro and macro fouling build-up where the problems occur. The invention has been granted a patent in many countries and is now at the TR7 level. It has been proven and researched in laboratories and an Proof of Concept in the power industry has been performed. 

Ultraguard Antifouling (Chris Ryan)

Ultraguard is a hi-tech, clean and efficient system for the prevention of biofouling on all types of vessels and craft anywhere in the world. Ultraguard generates high-powered ultrasonic pulses which it uses to resonate transducers attached to the vessel’s hull, seawater system, or coolers. The resonating transducers send vibrations across the protected surface and do not allow living organisms to settle down on the hull. 

Additional TOOL Featured Lists on Biofouling: 

You can also dive into the extensive world of more than 80 innovators & actors breaking boundaries within biofouling here.

Check out the Biofouling Innovation Challenge's 10 shortlisted innovators that will participate and showcase their solutions to potential investors and partners at the Pitch Fest here. Pitch Fest will take place on 19 & 20 October, in Barcelona, during the Sustainable Ocean Week 2022.

Get On The Map and Featured List

Want to get on the first and most complete map of biofouling innovators and be listed on the featured list? The first step is to create a profile. Follow this guide for instructions

Welcome to the world of TOOL and Biofouling Innovators!

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