Trieste – Fincantieri, in close collaboration with the virology laboratory of the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, ICGEB, has developed an innovative new generation air sanitation system called ” Safe Air “, which will significantly improve the quality and cleaning the air on board cruise ships.
As part of its commitment to the health and safety of its guests and crew, MSC Cruises will be the first cruise company to install this new and advanced technology aboard MSC Seashore (pictured), the first of two cruise ships. “Seaside Evo” class. MSC Seashore is currently under construction at the Finacantieri shipyard in Monfalcone: in addition to being the largest ship ever built in Italy, it will also be the most technologically advanced.
The “ Safe Air ” sanitation system was developed by the designers and technicians of Fincantieri and by the virology laboratory of the International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology , ICGEB, an important research institute based in Trieste. The Institute provides companies with scientific support for the development of innovative technological solutions for the control of viral infections, particularly relevant today given the current global health crisis.
The new new generation air sanitization system will be based on the technology of UV-C lamps, or type C ultraviolet rays, applied in conjunction with the air conditioning system. In this way, the air flow will be irradiated to the source with a short wavelength light, striking the organic particles and thus preventing the circulation of air pollutants such as viruses, bacteria and molds.
As with all new MSC Cruises units , MSC Seashore – which will enter service in 2021 – will also be equipped with the latest technologies and solutions available to reduce its environmental impact. These include in particular a state-of-the-art Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system and an Advanced Next Generation Wastewater Treatment (AWT) system. SCR systems reduce nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions by 90% thanks to advanced active emission control technology. While AWT systems take wastewater through a comprehensive process of very fine purification and filtration which makes the water with a similar quality to tap water.
MSC Seashore will also be equipped with shore-to-ship power capabilities that allow the ship to connect to local power grids while docked, thereby further reducing emissions to air.
MSC Cruises recently demonstrated that its new health and safety protocol went far beyond the recommendations of the relevant authorities, setting new standards for the cruise industry compared to universal testing.
All guests undergo a universal health screening before boarding a ship which includes three complete steps: checking the temperature, filling out a personal health questionnaire and the Covid-19 antigen swab. The crew is swabbed up to three times before they can start work on board.
Other aspects of the protocol include further elevated sanitation and cleaning services, shore excursions protected following the concept of “ protection bubble “, masks and maintenance of social distancing, enhanced on-board medical facilities, daily health monitoring and a strict plan emergency for the management of any suspicious cases.
The protocol was developed by the company’s internal experts in medical services, public health and hygiene, hotel services, heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, and other on-board engineering, information technology and logistics systems.
A Covid-19 Blue-Ribbon Expert Group has also been established with leading experts in the fields of medicine, public health and related scientific disciplines who are part of a highly qualified and internationally recognized team to inform and review initiatives of MSC Cruises in relation to Covid-19, thus helping to ensure that the actions taken are appropriate, effective and in line with the best scientific and health practices available.
The protocol has been operational since August 16, the day on which MSC Grandiosa resumed sailing in the western Mediterranean. MSC Grandiosa has successfully completed its eighth weekly cruise, ensuring full safety for thousands of guests, and from 19 October it will be joined by MSC Magnifica , which will depart Genoa for 11-day cruises in the western and eastern Mediterranean.
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