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Types of Marine Fenders

Updated: Sep 19, 2021

Marine fenders are a type of marine equipment that are used to prevent ships, boats and other naval vessels from colliding against each other or against docks, wharves and piers. They are also known as marine bumper. Rubber fenders are designed to absorb the energy that a vessel transfers to a berthing structure, hence the term energy absorption, so that the amount of energy received by the dock is much less compared to when fenders are absent.

Marine fenders, in today’s times are employed in such a way that they are kept on the hull or the head of a boat or a ship in order to prevent casualty to the hull or the head of the naval vessel if there is any collision happening between boats. This is an equipment that is of much significance due to the prevention of damage to both the vessel and the other surface. The main aim of installing the marine rubber fender is to protect both vessel and dock from major failure during the berthing period.

There are various types of marine fenders catering to different functionalities. ESC supplies the best designed, high performance materials for a low maintenance, long service life whatever your working demands and environmental conditions.

In order to achieve the intended result, there are several factors to consider in choosing the right type of marine rubber fender to use, namely the dimension of berthing vessels to consider the size of fenders ; the type of the port such as the location and position of the port; situation around the port to evaluate the marine environment such as high tide or low tides or the power of wind which influences the waves; and the existence tugboat to guide the vessel while berthing to avoid vessels from crashing into the port wall.

Marine fender comes in different shapes, some of the most popular ones include cell fenders, cone fenders, pneumatic fenders, arch fenders, foam fenders, cylindrical fenders, element fender and many more. Here are some of the fender types and its uses:

Cell fender is one of the most reliable, proven fender design and the most commonly used structure in the maritime industry such as oil and LNG platforms, offshore terminals, container berths and others.

Cone fender is the kind of fender that is suitable for handling different situations due to its highly efficient geometry. Its application can be in those sites with much difference in the tidal variations.

Pneumatic fenders are mainly used for transferring from one ship to another at the mid seas. This type of fenders requires minimal maintenance, so costs are minimised. The special feature of this fender is the lower reaction force at the time of lower deflection. This property makes these fenders very suitable for Ship-to-ship (STS) operations.

Arch fenders has a simple design that provides excellent shear performance. This type of fender is suitable for vessels with high allowable hull pressures due to its design. Its popular application includes general cargo vessels, workboat harbours, barge berths and more.

Foam Fenders absorb impacts even in an aggressive environment. Every cell is separate and so water cannot migrate into the foam. No matter how badly abused Foam Fenders will not burst or explode.

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