The M/S Coral Princess fitted with the Hyde GuardianTM ballast water treatment system (BWT), is the first ship accepted into the US Coast Guard's Ship Technology Evaluation Program (STEP). The significance of the STEP Acceptance is that the Coral Princess will be allowed to discharge properly treated ballast water from the Hyde Guardian System in the US for the life of the ship.  Tom Dow, Vice President Public Affairs, of Carnival Corporation & PLC comments, "This is leading edge technology that deals with a serious concern in the maritime industry, protection of coastal waters from invasive species. Princess is the first cruise line to be approved and is in the lead in the cruise industry on this." 

Hyde Marine began developing this technology more than ten years ago and gained extensive experience while supporting biological research teams. It delivered five, first-generation treatment systems in 2000 and 2001. Hyde refined the design, improved the performance, and in 2003 delivered the HG250 system to the Coral Princess. The Guardian has operated continuously and trouble free for more than 5 years. Hyde also delivered a Guardian system to the Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines' Celebrity Mercury in 2006 and in December 2008, delivered six Guardian systems to the Royal Navy for their new UK Future Aircraft Carrier (CVF) program. The Hyde Guardian was selected in competition with all available BWT technologies, because it uses no chemicals or other active substances, is proven reliable, is compact, and has a fully automated design.

The Hyde Guardian is a simple and elegant solution, which meets the pending IMO ballast water management convention requirements. The robust design includes an efficient, auto-backflushing filter which removes sediment and larger plankton, and a powerful UV disinfection system which kills or inactivates the smaller organisms and bacteria. The combination of these technologies has proven both cost effective and compliant with the IMO D2 standards. Hyde Marine anticipates IMO Type Approval in early 2009 through the UK Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA) in cooperation with Lloyds Register.  

The Hyde Guardian is fully automated and can be integrated into the ship's ballast control system. The compact design can be skid mounted for new construction or modular for easy installation in crowded machinery spaces on existing vessels. The competitively priced system is the perfect ballast water management solution for cruise ships, cargo, container ships, and military vessels because of its small footprint, low energy requirement, and proven reliability. 

Tom Mackey, expressing his gratitude said, “We thank Princess Cruises for their confidence and continued support during the pioneering days and for their generous cooperation during two extensive shipboard testing programs associated with the STEP Acceptance.”