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With the recent initiatives to modernize large ship power systems, ship builders are integrating technologies with the aim of an all-electric energy system. New control strategies utilizing distribution automation and network reconfiguration provide greater flexibility, reliability, and quality of service. These automated controls require efficient and accurate load flow solutions. A critique of classical and distribution power-flow methods is conducted for shipboard distribution automation. Three classical radial-network power-flow methods are reviewed. A modification of the forward-backward sweep method is presented, which enhances the computation time and solution convergence. Comparative tests are conducted on a new benchmark test system of a ship's distribution network. The results demonstrate that the modified forward-backward sweep method succeeds in being the fastest method with good convergence on networks with low X/R ratios.