Crowley inks MOU on nuclear power generation ship
Crowley is collaborating with BWX Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: BWXT), the company that builds the reactors for the US Navy's nuclear ships, on a concept nuclear power generation ship that could generate alternative, zero-carbon energy for defense and disaster needs by including a microreactor on board.
Crowley inked an MOU with BWXT's Advanced Technologies division to collaboratively seek and develop prospects related to the design, engineering, and development of new shallow-draft hull ships that will bring small-scale nuclear energy to shoreside areas.
The new ships would be outfitted with the most recent technology for factory-fabricated microreactors, which would be easily deployed into a shipyard configuration for ease of installation aboard the vessel. The onboard power plant would deliver energy to shore facilities like as military outposts on isolated islands, backup utility networks after disasters, and offer power in other instances where traditional power sources are destroyed or unavailable.
The new vessel concept envisions a 378-foot ship that combines Crowley's logistics and marine capabilities, with in-house vessel design by Crowley Engineering Services, and BWXT's nuclear capabilities, which has been a leading supplier of nuclear components, fuel, and services to the US government for more than 60 years at the highest levels of safety and security.
Crowley and BWXT are both established in the United States and have been in operation for over a century.
"Our collaboration with BWXT will bring Crowley into the nuclear energy sector for the first time, which is an important part of our commitment to sustainable, alternative energy sources," said Shiju Zacharia, senior vice president and general manager, Crowley Government Solutions. "This concept supports the United States Department of Energy's goal of maintaining US leadership in nuclear energy technology, as well as many of the United States Department of Defense's operational energy strategic goals."
This conventionally fueled nuclear power generating ship would convey a modular reactor with a capacity of 5 to 50 MW, which could be ignited upon arrival at the destination and deactivated and transferred once the power supply was cut off.
Ships will be able to deploy electricity connections to shore thanks to buoyed power delivery lines. Shallow draft hulls allow the vessels to move to distribute power strategically for military actions or if calamities restrict harbor access.
"We are excited to work alongside Crowley to leverage our ongoing reactor development and demonstration programs, advancing nuclear technology into new and novel markets to deliver zero carbon emissions energy generation to strategic locations," said Joe Miller, president of BWXT Advanced Technologies LLC.