FAQ’s

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Balaena is a revolutionary technology with a demonstrated potential to substantively improve spill response. Our design strategy has centered on providing an overwhelmingly effective response to oil spills. We expect significantly less damage to the environment; reductions in the amount of waste to be transported, treated or disposed and to protect critical ecosystems, vulnerable shorelines and key infrastructure, while minimizing interruption to maritime traffic.

High-capacity pumps induce significant movement of water, actively drawing oil to the vessel without emulsification, then separate the oil (without the use of filtration or consumables) from the water in real-time for rapid recovery. The Balaena POC vessel utilizes a 1000+ gallon (3785+ liter) collection chamber, entrapping the oil while discharging clean water and has the ability for simultaneous and continuous discharge/transfer of recovered oil to transportation barges (or similar), effectively making our OSR a pumping station of unlimited capacity.

There are 2 reasons we named our technology Balaena.

Our solution ingests endless amounts of water and only retains the recovered product.

Grates are used as physical barriers at the inlet of the process to prevent ingestion of debris and/or wildlife. In fact, the resemblance of these grates to the baleen of whales was the inspiration for the name “Balaena!”

In April of 2021, ASTM F2709-08 testing was performed at the Ohmsett Test Facility and indicated average efficiencies up to 98% oil to water ratio at a Recovery Rate over 150 gpm (<9 l/s) and clean water discharge with <5 ppm oil on average. Self-propelled demonstrations indicated analogous performance in towed/propelled conditions between 0.5-2.5 knots in calm water conditions. Further testing of additional Balaena solutions/products will be performed in October of 2022.

In April of 2021, ASTM F2709-08 testing was performed at the Ohmsett Test Facility and indicated average efficiencies up to 98% oil to water ratio at a Recovery Rate over 150 gpm (<9 l/s) and clean water discharge with <5 ppm oil on average. Self-propelled demonstrations indicated analogous performance in towed/propelled conditions between 0.5-2.5 knots in calm water conditions. Further testing of additional Balaena solutions/products will be performed in October of 2022.

OUR WORK

  1. Balaena Express for protected waters; including inland lakes, rivers and navigable marshes, our “Production Model” is currently being manufactured and we are accepting orders. This vessel can be trailered/towed without permits on highways by non-commercial vehicles and is designed to be compatible with a C130 transport aircraft.
  2. Shallow water pods, great for shallow marshes, pools, and/or fixed deployments likely indicate the use of shallow water pods (testing at Ohmsett in October 2022) for areas under docks and wetlands spill collection as well as containerized versions for fixed installations or deployment from existing OSR vessels.
  3. 60’ OSRV, for open water applications; including marine offshore/nearshore, coastal, & Great Lakes. Common features include rapid mobilization and transit; the ability to unilaterally “seek and destroy” small spills or patches with or without boom containment, while also being compatible with existing OSR infrastructure to participate in concert with traditional OSR solutions. Available is shallow water design or Deep V hull.
  4. Deployment Pods variants marshes and bayous impose draft restrictions that are better suited to distributing the ingestion phase of recovery to shallow water pods connected to either a collection vessel that is standing off in deeper water or a containerized solution on deck, on land, or in the water nearby. We have designed and built subscale prototypes of these shallow water collection pods that demonstrate great promise in extending the capability of recovery operations into difficult to reach places. Shallow water pods are envisioned to work as an extension of a Balaena OSRV or a modularized solution, in both mobile and fixed deployments.

Yes. Please submit a request on our Contact Us page. We review each submission on a case-by-case basis.

Balaena is currently designing deployment pods which can fixed, semi-permanent, or mobile and will serve as both a sentry for early detection & first-line response for recovery of spills in marinas, ports, and turning base. Containerized/modularized OSR (TRL-6): we envision scenarios where self-propulsion is not required, nor even desired. Examples include: fixed or semi-permanent installations that are either on standby for immediate deployment or are continuously processing water to fulfill a “detection by collection” role in highly sensitive areas; deployments from the decks of existing response vessels (workboats), similar to existing skimmers, where operating additional vessel types is not feasible or desirable. Sizes of modularized solutions are highly scalable from person-portable (cooler sized) to the size of a 40’ container, and are functionally equivalent to the OSRV in operations, hence the elevated TRL.

No, Balaena can collect any product that is above neutral buoyancy, including recovery of toxic algae, plastic nurdles, and other floating contaminants, as well as potential in industrial processes/cleanup.

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Yes, It works on neutral buoyant products, such as nurdles and other microplastics.

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Yes, as long as its properties are above neutral buoyancy.

The membrane we use, allows us to filter anything above 31 Microns.

There is potential to achieve directional vs isotropic flow under ice due to the significant water movement the Balaena process induces. Several ideas include augmenting the suction-induced flow by pressure-feeding discharged water beyond the spill; selective deployment of semi-rigid skirts in an ice hole for vectoring of inflow; and/or “lubrication” of under-ice flow of oil with strategically injected air.

Balaena is currently taking orders on a first come, first serve basis. Fill out our order form and a representative will contact you directly.

Balaena Express Boat – 6 month lead time

Balaena Express Working set – 9 month lead time

Balaena Inland Pod – 90 days

Balaena Offshore Pod – 6 month lead time

Balaena 60’ Shallow Water Boat – 12 months

Balaena 60’ Deep V OSRV – 24 months

  • Eliminating disposal of waste (other than the recovered oil) as a factor, requiring no consumable disks, pads, or belts
  • Eliminates excess water for disposal
  • Requires less personnel
  • It is not necessary to set up a decon camp
  • Enhancing the ability to begin recovery operations before significant spreading of the spill or weathering of the oil has occurred. While deployment of containment booms is advantageous for a variety of reasons, Balaena OSRVs can began recovery of spills even before boom infrastructure is on site and take advantage of corralled oil, once boom is mobilized.
  • Enabling simultaneous and continuous discharge/transfer of recovered oil to transportation barges (or similar), effectively making our OSR a pumping station of unlimited capacity

If the addition of dilutants is desired for downstream processing, it can be done internally to avoid environmental contamination.

  • Designed with ease of decontamination in mind, we’ve nooks & crannies in the collection chamber.
  • At the end of a spill, strip/flush the collection chamber and de-ballast. Trailer to tank cleaning facility.
  • It is not necessary to set up a de-con camp.

Offering the option for remote piloting of the vessel and remote status & control of OSR processes to increase flexibility of deploying into hazardous/volatile conditions, enabling the possibility of 24/7 continuous, unmanned operations.

Integrating smart-phone and/or tablet app control for continuous status monitoring and “one-touch” configuration & control, significantly reducing training requirements for operations personnel.

Our Oversea app allows the customer to customize controls and choose from a variety of options, listed on our order form.

Bitumen or tar balls can be recovered if buoyant. Further, the closed collection process affords the opportunity to inject dilutants into recovered oil if desired to enhance discharge or downstream handling/processing.

While all the capabilities listed above are achievable with currently available technology, we remain sensitive to the price point of our solutions and therefore will provide a spectrum of automation options tailored to customer requirements.

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