8 May 2023
Her thesis, "Alternative Fuels for Containerships: A Feasibility Assessment of LNG, MeOH, and H2 vs. HFO and their Impact on Global Warming and Acidification," was supervised by Prof. Dr. Jürgen Scheffran (Universität Hamburg) and Prof. Dr. Uwe Schneider (Universität Hamburg).
Ximena developed a decision-making framework encompassing economic and environmental preservation when choosing an alternative fuel or technology. In today's urgent pursuit of achieving climate neutrality, firms face complex challenges: first, understanding the degree and forms they are impacting the problem; second, a decision-making approach that encompasses economic, social, and environmental preservation. In her thesis, a case study was performed using a 15,000 TEU containership engaged in a typical commercial route between Europe and Asia. Considering each fuel's energy content and density, their behavior was modeled to answer questions such as: Which of the studied alternatives would be a better investment cost and environmentally wise for a container shipping company? How would each of the studied fuels behave on a typical commercial route? Would bunkering activities be needed more often or less? How much would the fuel consumption cost, and how many emissions to the air imply? Is the fuel in line with achieving climate neutrality in 2050? Does it make sense to choose the same fuel considering the 2030 and 2050 targets? Overall, the methodology developed in the case study shows the potential to provide a good framework for decision-making for a shipping company. However, it still needs to overcome some limitations.
Ximena did her thesis at Hamburg Universität while working at Hapag-Lloyd, where she gained all the industry knowledge.
In the future, Ximena plans to be part of the corporate world, helping companies understand, define and achieve their sustainability goals.