China floats first battery-powered container ship for Yangtze River route

China has floated a battery-powered container ship and it is scheduled to begin sea trials in late September, The Maritime Executive reports. The vessel, which is being built for China’s COSCO Shipping Heavy Industry, is the first of two river container ships that will be used on the 600-mile route from Shanghai to Wuhan along the Yangtze river.
Reports say the vessels will have containerised batteries, which will be recharged at stations along the route and swapped in to the vessel. The 20ft battery containers will be just 2.6% of the cargo.
Each of the ships will be powered by two 900 kW main propulsion motors.
The ships will use a smart ship management system to increase the efficiency of the operations. It will be able to intelligently adjust energy consumption based on the needs of the ship and plan the speed of the voyage according to the arrival time, water flow, battery capacity, and other factors.
Construction of a second vessel began in May. They will be operated by Shanghai Pan Asia Shipping, a subsidiary of COSCO, on the Yangtze.

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