Shipyards throughout Europe could become more competitive, and help the environment, by moving away from welding and using adhesive bonding for joining lightweight materials. That is the result of BONDSHIP, a major initiative to funded with €4.6 million (euros) under the Sustainable Surface Transport programme of the EU’s Framework Programme.
The aim of the project was to achieve considerable cost savings in the production and operation of more fuel-efficient passenger ships, ferries and high-speed craft and so make European shipyards more competitive. The added benefit of adhesive bonding is that it will also make positive contributions to the preservation and improvement of the quality of the environment by reducing the amount of welding slag created.
From studies carried out in the project group, it was estimated that adhesive bonding would provide a cost saving of at least 20% for fastening of supports, stiffeners and other attachments in outfitting of large passenger ships. For a patrol craft reductions in building costs through the use of adhesive bonding in the superstructure can be expected to be around 25 to 30%. For fast ferries, another important benefit is a weight reduction of the structure by about 4.5 to 9 tons.
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