The use of batteries to cut emissions on large cruise ships is to be trialled by Carnival Corporation’s German line Aida Cruises.

The company plans to install lithium-ion battery storage systems across its fleet of 13 ships, with the start of operations due in 2020.

The use of batteries will further cut the consumption of fossil fuels while improving the efficiency of ship operations, according to the company.

The use of a battery system on an Aida ship is part of a ‘green cruising’ strategy.

Aida Cruises has pioneered the use of low-emission liquefied natural gas (LNG) to power its vessels.

Aidanova entered service powered by LNG in December 2018, with two more ships set to join the fleet by 2023.

Aida is also exploring the possibility of CO2-free production of LNG from renewable sources or the use of fuel cells in cruise shipping.

The line expected 94% of passengers to be sailing on ships that can be fully powered with low-emission LNG or green shore-side energy at port where available by the end of 2023.

Sister line P&O Cruises’ new ship Iona will be the first in the UK to be powered by LNG when it starts service from Southampton next May. A sister LNG ship is due to be introduced in 2022.  

Aida Cruises – part of the Italian Costa Group within Carnival Corporation – is to co-operate with the world’s leading marine battery supplier Corvus Energy from Norway in the latest initiative.

Costa group CEO Michael Thamm said: “Our goal is the emissions-neutral ship operation.

“The electrification of our ships is another important milestone on this path.

“Thanks to the co-operation with Corvus Energy, already in a few months, Aida Cruises is going to launch this innovative technology on a large cruise ship.”

Norwegian expedition line Hurtigurten has strted using hybrid power through battery packs to support engines with three vessels to be converted in addition to new-build MS Roald Amundsen.