Terminal: Massvlakte Olie Terminal (MOT)
Location: Rotterdam, NL
Object ID: TK401
Tank Height: 49 ft (15m)
Tank diameter: 82 ft (25m)
Total surface coated: 10,882 ft2 (1011 m2)
Type of coatings used: Interzone 954 (primer), Interthane® 990 (topcoat)
In the picturesque region of the Benelux, the art of spray coating has met with strict regulations. Here, outdoor spray coating is not permitted if the transfer efficiency from the spray gun to the substrate dips below 70%. The majority of storage tank terminals, both in Benelux and further afield in Europe, have even set their own standards by advocating for roller brush application. For establishments like MOT, this meant their contractors had to exclusively rely on roller brushes, inadvertently causing a slowdown in application compared to the use of spray guns.
Enter Qlayers. Known as a trailblazer in the field of robotic coating technology, they designed semi-autonomous robots. Their mission? To revolutionize the coating of storage tanks by combining speed, safety, and efficiency. By embracing automation, Qlayers aimed to enhance value for their clients, with a prime focus on impeccable quality, an unyielding commitment to safety, and a determination to minimize paint waste through the avoidance of overspray.
This particular undertaking had a clear-cut objective: assess the latest iteration that emerged from insightful feedback provided by AkzoNobel. The primary emphasis was on gauging the quality of paint application while ensuring defects were reduced to the barest minimum.
RESULTS AND INSIGHTS
Every project has its share of unpredictability, especially when it is laden with external uncontrollable elements. This assignment was no different. External factors, whether they were condensation, rain, or the ever-fluctuating temperatures, did pose challenges. Even the tank’s exterior, with its curved surface, was a hurdle for the robot at times.
Yet, in the face of adversity, Qlayers showcased resilience and innovation. They not only navigated the challenges but also successfully wrapped up the coating operation, standing testament to their operational efficiency. Each venture provided them with invaluable insights, helping them harness control over external disruptors.
A standout triumph was the exemplary functionality of their novel shielding system – an integral part of the robot designed to encase and aerate the spray gun and its spray. And the numbers spoke for themselves:
- 2066 ft2/hr (192 m2/hr): Highest coating speed.
- 11.8 mils (300 μm): Average dry layer thickness for the primer.
- 2.7 mils (70 μm): Average dry layer thickness for the topcoat.
This project stands as a testament to Qlayers’ alignment with BlastOne’s brand promise – delivering solutions that are “Faster, Safer, Cleaner.” Their dedication to innovation and excellence ensures that age-old challenges find modern, efficient solutions.