First Emission-Free Cargo Ship Using Interchangeable Battery Containers Sails

Sep, 2021 - By SMI

First Emission-Free Cargo Ship Using Interchangeable Battery Containers Sails

Zero Emission Services (ZES) began sailing the Alphenaar, the first Dutch inland cargo ship that uses swappable battery containers for its propulsion.

Zero Emission Services (ZES) started sailing the Alphenaar on September 06, 2021. It is the first Dutch inland navigation vessel that is using swappable energy containers for momentum. The Dutch corporation is using interchangeable battery containers to lower the carbon emission. As per the company, 5% of overall carbon emission of the Netherlands is caused by inland shipping and the company is focused on making these operations eco-friendly by providing an option to the ships powered by diesel.

The battery containers used in the vessel are normal 20ft containers full with batteries that are charged by green energy. These battery modules are somewhat similar to Maersk’s battery modules that too pack into usual containers to improve the potential of ships that sail internationally.  The battery pack is called as ZESpack and it operates as swappable battery that can be put into a cargo ship to power it on its voyage. It can be interchanged for a charged one at an exchange station with minimum time needed. This concept was first practiced by ZES’s customised ship, the Alphenaar. The ship was being built for the job for some months in the past, where they made addition of conventional plug connections to extract power from the ZES packs. Before sailing the Alphenaar on inland routes, it was taken to the sea for trials in August.

ZES plans to increase their sailing processes to add in eight ships, 14 ZESpacks, and eight loading stations where 2 packs can be charged in less than 3 hours and it can be used for stabilizing the electricity grid. It is targeting to service 30 shipping courses by the year 2030 and 40 shipping courses by the year 2050 and to have 400 vessels in service. The company claims that the technology is ready to be used with other energy sources like ammonia and hydrogen in the future.

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