We previously saw the plans for a self-driving electric container ship by the Norwegian company Yara, but it does not set sail until next year. China, on the other hand, did not plan to wait that long and has already launched an all-electric cargo ship. This 2,000 metric ton ship was launched last month in the province of Guangzhou, as reported by China Daily.
The all-electric cargo ship was constructed by Guangzhou Shipyard International Company Ltd. It has a length of 70.5 meters (230 feet). It travels at a speed of 12.8 km/hr (8 mph) and has a battery capacity of 2,400 kWh. It can travel around 80 km (50 miles) on a two-hour charge. This charge time is the same as the time required to unload the ship’s cargo when it is docked.
“As the ship is fully electric powered, it poses no threats to the environment,” said Huang Jialin, general manager of Hangzhou Modern Ship Design & Research Co, the company behind the ship’s design. “The technology will soon be likely … used in passenger or engineering ships.”
It’s ironic what the world’s first all-electric cargo ship is hauling Coal. That’s right, the emission that the ship is cutting down by shifting to electric are being compensated by its cargo. It is still a step in the right direction and we might soon see a change in the cargo and the ship might be hauling parts for a wind turbine or solar panels. With the Norwegians following the suit, we might see a number of other countries follow this example.
You can see the launch of the ship in the video below: