Battery Tankers as Energy Carriers

Battery Tankers as Energy Carriers

Market news |
By Wisse Hettinga

Japanese battery startup Power X unveils the design of a large electric ship to be completed by 2025. Vessel ‘X’ will be the first in a line of “Battery Tankers” and is scheduled for field tests in 2026

The zero-emission tanker measures 140 meters and will carry 96 containerised ship batteries with LFP cells on board, providing a total capacity of 241 MWh. The battery system is scalable, allowing the installation of additional batteries to build larger electric transport vessels, informs the startup. Power X also mentions the Power Ark 1000 or even larger sizes as examples to meet specific mission requirements.

Power X envisions the Battery Tanker acting as a carrier which may hold excess energy from renewables and deploy it in areas of high demand. The company here mentions wind power plants at sea, for example. The company further lists undersea cable failures, repairs, and the costs associated with ultra-high voltage connections and substations as issues its battery ships would overcome.

Once at the shore, Power X proposes repurposing decommissioned or idle thermal power plants near ports and transforming these into charge/discharge points for Battery Tankers, allowing for power transmission through land-based grid connections. The Battery Tankers would then serves for short-distance maritime power transfer between land areas, complementing existing inter-regional grid transmission lines.


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