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IMS, an Israeli company has developed a system that offers protection to marine installations and assets (protected zone) against spread of floating spill (e.g. oil, chemical, etc.) as well as providing barrier against intrusion.

The unique system enables control access for ongoing operations to the marine installation by submerging at least parts of the barrier, and furthermore providing bad weather serviceability by submerging the entire barrier with a focus on quality and customer needs based on long-term partnership, trust and confidence. 

The system, or some of its sections, may be integrated with other mechanical equipment such as: means to collect floating spill (e.g. skimmers), divers net, underwater sensors, sonar, light system, etc. 

The submerging and floating of IMS submersible barrier process is performed as follows:  barrier is anchored to the seabed in a way that withstands the effects of waves, wind and tidal forces. Within the barrier body is a floating chamber that control the flotation and the submerging of the barrier, while provide buoyancy to stabilize the barrier in an upright position. When requested the barrier move to a floating position or substantially / entirely submerge below the water level.  The submerging and floating requires about 15-20 minutes, result will be display on a screen monitor in addition to light and/or sound.

The technology makes use in principles of submerging and floating, as well as uses of HDPE polymer pipe (antifouling) which allows the company to provide a structural strength, durability and flexibility.

According to IMS in recent years, concerns about the security of marine energy installations include not only accidents and natural effects such as earthquakes and storm, but intentional malicious acts such as terrorism and cyber-attacks.

States dependency on oil and gas imports / export is increasing, as are the energy needs of rising powers. The political, economic and security challenges surrounding of state energy supply are profound.

Oil spills are considered pollutant posing considerable risk of destruction marine and coastal environment. Potential contamination risk can be caused from variety of sources such as: gas and coal terminals, anchorages (marinas), channels and canals systems, port activities or any other marine infrastructures. Risk of contamination is high, due to common operational or engineering failures.

Past experiences show that when a large scale marine pollution event occurred, there is almost no way to block the pollution and prevent it from affecting the shore and further harming the environment. In addition, past experiences show that even in a local event, the existing equipment most of the time can block and handle no more than 20-25% of the pollution.

This barrier, however, is an automated, submersible marine perimeter and is suitable for open sea and function as protection zone barrier as well as a contamination contaminant – 24/7.

According to IMS’s their product can be operated unmanned or by a single operator, rather than existing alternatives, which require an oil spill response team (between 12-15 skilled and trained operators, 2-3 treatment/response vessel and area contingency plan). Consequently, the new barrier tends to be more reliable, faster in deployment, containment and recovery than the known alternatives, the effectiveness of those depends on weather conditions and the time it takes to mobilize the equipment to the affected site. 

IMS’s product minimizes risk to employees as well as to the environment (e.g. diminish of “marine snow” phenomena), thus preventing and/or reducing ecological and economic damage.