Could Oil Tankers Be New Reactor Market?

Lloyd's Registry launches investigation of potential

1 min read
Could Oil Tankers Be New Reactor Market?

With rising fuel prices, pending international limits on sulfur emissions, and concerns about greenhouse gas emissions in mind, the British shipping consultancyLloyd's Registry has launched a study of whether oil tankers should be nuclear-powered. At present, reactors have been used almost exclusively to power  military ships, starting with the famous U.S.S. Nautilus submarine (above). In civilian shipping, with the exception of one Russian container boat, nuclear propulsion is used only for icebreakers. Vince Jenkins, global marine risk adviser at Lloyds, clients of the firm are showing interest in alternative propulsion technologies that would cut carbon emissions. "Nuclear power is the only technology that can replace carbon emissions entirely," Jenkins told the Financial Times. 

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This photograph shows a car with the words “We Drive Solar” on the door, connected to a charging station. A windmill can be seen in the background.

The Dutch city of Utrecht is embracing vehicle-to-grid technology, an example of which is shown here—an EV connected to a bidirectional charger. The historic Rijn en Zon windmill provides a fitting background for this scene.

We Drive Solar

Hundreds of charging stations for electric vehicles dot Utrecht’s urban landscape in the Netherlands like little electric mushrooms. Unlike those you may have grown accustomed to seeing, many of these stations don’t just charge electric cars—they can also send power from vehicle batteries to the local utility grid for use by homes and businesses.

Debates over the feasibility and value of such vehicle-to-grid technology go back decades. Those arguments are not yet settled. But big automakers like Volkswagen, Nissan, and Hyundai have moved to produce the kinds of cars that can use such bidirectional chargers—alongside similar vehicle-to-home technology, whereby your car can power your house, say, during a blackout, as promoted by Ford with its new F-150 Lightning. Given the rapid uptake of electric vehicles, many people are thinking hard about how to make the best use of all that rolling battery power.

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