Florida-based Crowley has partnered with BWX Technologies (BWXT) to jointly develop a ship concept generating alternative, zero-carbon energy.
Under the collaboration, the team will design, engineer, and fabricate new shallow-draft hull ships supplying small-scale nuclear energy through the latest microreactor technology that is easily deployable and integrated.
The resulting platforms will serve as power plants at sea and support energy distribution to shoreside facilities, including military installations on remote islands and backup utility grids during calamities.
The vessels can also relay power to sites without traditional electricity sources available.
Supporting US Defense, Energy Strategic Goals
The nuclear power generator ships are planned to have a length of 378 feet (115 meters), Crowly wrote.
Each platform will be equipped with the company’s proprietary logistics and marine systems, as well as BWXT’s nuclear capabilities.
It will combine a traditional propulsion and modular reactor between 5 to 10 megawatts that immediately activates and deactivates between transits.
The ships will carry buoyed power cables to dispense power to the shore. Simultaneously, the shallow draft hull feature will enable vessels to maneuver strategically in ongoing military activities or with limited harbor access during power distribution.
“Our cooperation with BWXT will move Crowley for the first time into the nuclear energy sector, a key part of our commitment to sustainable, alternative energy sources,” Crowley Government Solutions General Manager and SVP Shiju Zacharia said.
“This concept supports the US Department of Energy’s goal of maintaining US leadership in nuclear energy technology as well as many US Department of Defense’s strategic goals for operational energy.”