How it Works
Eco-Clad® is a new class of bottom paint that uses a patented biotech approach to address the issue of antifouling. It is engineered to support a natural beneficial biofilm (slime) on the coated area. The paint is a food source for a preferred set of local and naturally occurring organisms that form the biofilm. When introduced to seawater or fresh water, an invisible biofilm will grow on the Eco-Clad® paint surface. Much like the protective coating on a fish, the surface repels and prevents fouling, keeping the bottom of the boat clean. This biofilm also forms a slick layer which reduces the hull’s drag, increasing speed and reducing fuel consumption.
The development of the biofilm is a multi-step process occurs shortly after the boat is in the water:
Step 1: Coating is placed in water. Coating contains a bio-supportive (foo source to feed the biofilm) and bio limiting (metallic copper) agents designed to attract a copper like beneficial biofilm. Beneficial microbes colonize the surface almost immediately.
Step 2: Biofilm is established in a day or two.
Step 3: Biofilm creates a surface that other setting organisms find distasteful. Surface becomes slippery, too.
Step 4: Any copper released from the coating must migrate through the biofilm. The majority of released copper is tied up as an organic copper molecules (ligand), which is well known to be non-toxic.