First Autonomous, Zero-Emission Container Ship to Set Sail


Yara International

A Norwegian company has created what it says is the world's first fully autonomous, zero-emission container ship.

The Yara Birkeland is being developed by chemical company Yara International, in partnership with technology company Kongsberg Maritime and the shipbuilder Vard. The ship will not need a crew to operate, and will be powered by electricity, which means that it will not create harmful emissions.

A 2020 study by the International Maritime Organization estimated that shipping was responsible for between 2% and 3% of human-made greenhouse gas emissions in 2018.

The Yara Birkeland's first voyage was originally planned for 2020. However, it was delayed by logistical problems and the COVID-19 pandemic. The ship is now planned to set sail before the end of 2021, traveling between the southern Norwegian ports of Herøya and Brevik.

The two ports are only about 13 kilometers apart, however — and the first trip will have a reduced crew to test the ship's systems.

At 80 meters long, the Yara Birkeland will be able to carry 103 containers, and will travel at a maximum speed of about 24 kilometers per hour.

Yara plant manager Jon Sletten told CNN that the fully autonomous ship will be cheaper to operate than regular ships. He said that while it will still need humans to load and unload cargo, the goal is to eventually make the entire process automatic. To do this, autonomous versions of the vehicles that load container ships will also need to be created in the future.

While it may be the first crewless container ship to run on electricity, the Yara Birkeland will not be the world's first fully autonomous ship. In 2018, Rolls-Royce and a Finnish company demonstrated a fully autonomous car ferry in Finland. And in June this year, the Mayflower Autonomous Ship left the UK to travel to the US — but it had mechanical problems and had to turn around five days later. It will attempt the journey again in spring 2022.

 

News Sourcehttps://engoo.com/app/daily-news/article/first-autonomous-zero-emission-container-ship-to-set-sail/4mqeOhZdEeyEoe-oO9g6Ew

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