Controlled Floating Skimmer (Aspirador Flotante Controlado "AFC")

Ready for Commercialization


General Description:

(Click on the image to enlarge it)

The Controlled Floating Skimmer (AFC, Aspirador Flotante Controlado), our patented system for gathering floating liquid spills, is based on a novel technology that has been economically supported by the European Union and whose effectiveness has been certified by the Main Directorate of the Merchant Marine of Spain and by Lloyd's Register of London

After the spills of the
“Prestige” in the Cantabrian Coast, the prototype was installed in a boat, owned by DRACE, that came specially from Cartagena to Santander (see second image of the left side), where we tried out diverse exercises and tests that demonstrated the effectiveness of this unit AFC, as it was proved by the certificate elaborated by Riusan SL.

No other similar system exists with as much capacity to gather, up to 480 m3/h, nor to withstand such extreme sea conditions.

At present, the equipment is kept by the Autoridad Portuaria de Santander (Portuary Authority of Santander) as a consecuence of the cooperation with this public organism and because of the succesful tests developed in the Bay of Santander.


Certificates obtained until now:

(click on the links to read them properly)

Comisión Europea
Ministerio de Fomento

Autoridad Portuaria de Santander
Lloyd's Register
Riusan S.L.

(Click on the image to enlarge it)


Presentation in video of the AFC:

o        Vídeo en Español

                ALTA CALIDAD  (40 Mb)     

o        Video in English

                HIGH QUALITY (40 Mb)       



·         The new controlled floating suction pump (Aspirador Flotante Controlado "AFC") employed to collect oil spillings is an equipment of two floating steel elements.

·         It can collect up to  480 m3/h depending on the properties and viscosity of the product to collect.

·         Two "AFC" equipments can be installed on one ship, reaching up to 960 m3/h capacity, which had never been got before with any other existing method.

·         While the collecting works, the speed of the ship must be below to 2 knots.

·         Its installation on board the tugboat or other ship is an easy operation.

·         The use of this system eliminates pollution by sucking the hydrocarbon, which after being recycled will generate an economic profit.

·         It selects and adjusts the sucking manually or automatically, reducing the intake of water considerably.

·         The system is especially designed to work either on protected waters and rivers or open sea, regardless of the movement of the tug while navigating in the collecting works.

·         It can also operate perfectly with swell.

·         The collected hydrocarbon can be kept in the tug tanks. If the extend of the spill is larger than the storage capacity of the ship, we could then store it in floating tanks in tow, or tanks of some other ships ready for this purpose.

(Click on the image to enlarge it)


Technical Description:







Skimmer floater

5,55 m

2,44 m

2,90 m

1.800 Kg

Floating support of the floating barriers tailpieces

5,55 m

2,44 m

1,90 m

1.200 Kg



 30 Kw

Suction capacity

480 m3/h  (adjustable)

The equipment can work auto or by power supplied by the vessel.

Hydraulic system

Placing of the suction mouth manual or automatically by means of electronic sensors.


Davits to carry the equipment to work place: hydraulic system

The equipment is carried inside two 20 feet conteiners.


General Information:

Patented by:

Novetec, Novedades Tecnológicas S.L.

C/Castilla, 14, 1º C

39002 Santander (Cantabria)



Tphn: +34 942 36 00 61
Fax: +34 942 21 35 58

Made by:

Vda. de Martín Martín, S.A.


Héroes de la Armada, s/n

39009 Santander (Cantabria)



Tphn: +34 942 21 18 61

Fax:: +34 942 31 33 62