Eco-Clad® is different than most other antifouling bottom paints in several ways. It is totally environmentally friendly with no poisons or biocides. There is copper in the paint but it is elemental copper or copper metal like we have in our water pipes so it is safe. Many of the other antifouling paints contain cuprous oxide and booster biocides which are effective but harmful to the local environment. Eco-Clad® is 82% solids which means that it is very low in VOCs (volatile organic compounds). Most antifouling paints are more than half solvent which makes them a high in VOC. Eco-Clad® is different because it is designed to support life – the beneficial biofilm – that fends off fouling species.
Biomimicry (from bios, meaning life, and mimesis, meaning to imitate) is a design discipline that seeks sustainable solutions by emulating nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies, e.g., a solar cell inspired by a leaf. The core idea is that Nature, imaginative by necessity, has already solved many of the problems we are grappling with: energy, food production, climate control, non-toxic chemistry, transportation, packaging, and a whole lot more.
The following excerpt is from an article written by the Biomimicry Institute and can be found at www.AskNature.org
Luritek’s patented paint, Eco-Clad®, protects boat hulls from unwanted marine fouling species. When a hull protected with Eco-Clad® is introduced to fresh or salt water, a biofilm of local and naturally occurring microorganisms forms. This biofilm provides a variety of functional benefits, including the production of natural repellents for unwanted marine fouling species.
Anti-fouling compounds are harmful to organisms and concern over harm to non-target organisms has reduced or eliminated their use in recent years. Eco-Clad® was designed to produce a more environmentally friendly way to prevent biological fouling of boats.
Differences from Existing Products
The coating contains only solids, no solvents. This eliminates the use of VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and other toxicity issues of biocides to control organisms that attach to boat surfaces. The biofilm attracted to the Eco-Clad® paint creates a slick surface which increases the fuel efficiency of boats by decreasing drag. Other benefits include reduced frequency of hull cleaning and repainting and increased speed.
The Biomimicry Story
Eco-Clad® paint is inspired by some organisms like fish that have a coating consisting of bacteria and other substances. This coating repels undesirable organisms that can slow fish down. The coating was created to include nutrients that would attract the right kind of biofilms.