The ice trials will test and examine the effectiveness of mechanical oil spill response operations in ice and the behavior of oil throughout recovery operations. During the test, the flow of oil beneath the ice will be simulated by the use of Rhodamine dye, a red tracer liquid. The Rhodamine will be applied to the recovery area and during recovery operation it will be filmed and its movements scientifically measured by various instruments for evaluation. Rhodamine is harmless to the water’s ecosystem and aquatic animals in small doses, but can be easily seen by the various measuring instruments utilized.
The Arctic Sternmax skimmer will be the oil recovery system used in the joint study developed by Arctia shipping, the Lapland Rescue Department and Lamor. The skimmer, designed by Lamor, is installed on the stern of the vessel. A brush wheel skimming system is deployed by an A-frame to the recovery area where the brush system rotates and collects oil from the ice and the water in between the ice. A separation grate facilitates this process and can flush the oil from the ice if necessary.
”The Gulf of Bothnia offers excellent conditions for oil spill response testing in ice. It is close by and easily accessible, there is certainly a decent amount of ice and the supporting infrastructure is readily available," says Arctia’s Development Manager Hanna Suutarla.
The oil recovery equipment installed on the harbor icebreaker Ahto embodies top quality Finnish design and the best available oil spill response and recovery technology available. The purpose of the ice tests is to develop the most effective and efficient oil recovery applications of the skimmer in challenging ice conditions. Arctia’s and Lamor’s research project is part of the Arctic Seas Tekes program.
Watch the video below and see Lamor's very own Rune Högström in Finland's YLE TV interview discussing the subject.