Hee Seung MoonHee Seung Moon is a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Energy Analysis and Environmental Impacts Division. Hee Seung’s research focuses on analyzing and optimizing the energy consumption and emissions of systems such as battery-electric shipping vessels, renewable-storage hybrid systems, distributed energy sources, and emerging cooling and heating technologies.
Exploring the potential of battery-electric ships
The United States’ ambitious greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction goals, along with targets set by the International Maritime Organization, create an important opportunity to explore battery-electric options for the shipping industry. Our research highlights adopting battery-electric shipping solutions can help achieve substantial emission reductions, ensure economic viability, and contribute to a more sustainable future in the U.S. maritime industry. Our findings show that electrifying 6,323 domestic ships under 1,000 gross tons could significantly reduce GHG emissions, achieving a 34-42% decrease in 2035 compared to a 2022 level. We estimate the annual electricity required by these ships to be 7.7 terawatt-hours. In 2035, 69-88% of the 6,323 battery-electric ships could become more economically viable if they covered 99% of their historical trip demand, thereby lowering the overall costs of electrifying these ships by 33%.