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  #11  
Old 10-20-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruisingdad
... Two large battery banks apparently provide enough power for even air conditioning, and the generator kicks on when the batts reach 50 or 70% (I think it is). ...

Still, why is this not the future of sailing?
The kick-in point is programmable.

I think it is the future but it's going to take several years for the systems to evolve. They need to operate off of high voltage for efficiency just like the Prius. But meanwhile we don't have standards and experience for using high voltage in boats. Hybrid systems are more complicated than direct drive diesels and need more specialized engineering per vessel. There are more barriers than with the current diesel drive solution.

The catamaran is ideal for this since you can replace two diesels with one relatively smaller one thereby freeing up space in the aft of the hulls.

If I had a vessel with a blown engine I'd probably repower with a custom hybrid system.
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  #12  
Old 10-20-2006
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I do believe this is the future in the marine industry. I think us sailors will be the first to embrace it as we do tend to be keen to our environment. The powerboat crowd will be less willing to adapt: "How much power will that thang put out?", and therefor will take a bit longer. However, down the road, like the auto industry, this is the likely "next step". Personally, I love the concept. How it works in practice, we'll have to see.

Did I just hear someone suggest Hydrogen?
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Old 10-20-2006
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torque....need we say more. Electricity is a far better than combustion on torque ratio's..It is the future of all..look how far the model A has came along since inception...Now think of technology today every 18 months things get faster,stronger and better..Digital technology mixed with electrical engineering is where the future is...look what just a watch battery can do now
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Old 10-20-2006
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I'm holding out for Mr. Fusion!
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Old 10-20-2006
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Diesel/electric drives are nothing new - many ships and pretty well all locomotives have used this idea for decades. As an auxiliary it's attractive from a noise/vibration perspective but realisitically to produce as much power as a conventional diesel drive the generator will need to be the same size or larger. So you won't get away with a smaller "cheaper" engine this way. Depending on battery reserves will help, but ultimately there is no free lunch when energy is concerned. Packing huge (read heavy) battery capacity is going to hurt in other ways, perhaps even more so with multihulls.

Maybe the fuel cell idea will come to a more practical level of technology in the nearer future.
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Old 10-20-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Faster
...As an auxiliary it's attractive from a noise/vibration perspective but realisitically to produce as much power as a conventional diesel drive the generator will need to be the same size or larger. So you won't get away with a smaller "cheaper" engine this way. ...
Faster, despite your intuitive analysis, in the trial systems fielded some innovators have been able to downsize the diesel by about 25% as a generator yet achieve the same speeds on small yachts when compared to direct diesel drive systems. I will try to find some references on that but I know I've seen that figure frequently in the literature. In the case of the Lagoon recently at the Annapolis show they were in fact able to replace the two conventional diesels with a net smaller diesel generator.

Achieving those downsizing results is dependent on very proper engineering so that the efficiencies of the diesel-generator can be best exploited while the direct diesel approach does have it's own inherent inefficiencies. One interesting aspect is that efficiency improvement can be harvested with the generator with the ability to use a larger prop which practically speaking is not an option with a direct diesel drive.

The best tutorial I've seen to date is on the Glacier Bay website: http://www.ossapowerlite.com/tech_li...efficiency.htm. It's pretty heavy stuff but I think it really does relate the complex variables involved. With all of the factors involved it suggests to me that one can't easily look from the outside of the two types of systems and make an assessment of which will be more efficient. Rather, the engineering must be done to make such a determination.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faster
...Maybe the fuel cell idea will come to a more practical level of technology in the nearer future.
GM and Chrysler have bet the farm on it. We should know how that works out in about 5 more years.
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Old 10-20-2006
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Okay, first of all, its a Cat. So it doesn't count. They could come standard with free porn channels 24/7 and I wouldn't go onboard at the boat show. But I think electric engines are a cool idea. But I also agree with the sentiment that diesels are easy and realiable. On the other hand, there is the porn aspect and no diesel smell!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Surfesq
Okay, first of all, its a Cat. So it doesn't count. They could come standard with free porn channels 24/7 and I wouldn't go onboard at the boat show. But I think electric engines are a cool idea. But I also agree with the sentiment that diesels are easy and realiable. On the other hand, there is the porn aspect and no diesel smell!
Ok Surf, there's hope. How about a monohull version:http://www.whisperprop.de/E_7_HOME_A...050F4BB_p.html

Or perhaps Nigel Calder's diesel-electric Malo 45.
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sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice sailaway21 is just really nice
Diesel-electric

Faster has a good memory. The T-2 tanker (that's the one that carried all the oil to Britain during the recent unpleasantness) were turbo-electric and the submarines of the era were diesel-electric. Old ideas, with new technology, have a way of coming around again, ie...fuel injection in the 1950s. While the size of the diesel engine may be reduced, the size of the generator, or alternator, will be substantially larger. I don't think we're talking about just a charging system on steroids here. If we cannot get serious power out of the diesel-gen. set then i believe we're wasting our time. Low power means contemplating matters such as batteries as ballast. High power has certain safety concerns with it as anyone who's seen a large gen-set overspeed and fly apart. The common thread contains, "lucky to be alive". AC offers a 3-5% improvement in efficiency over DC and would probably be "safer" than DC. One advantage, of course, is that one could seperate the power unit (diesel-generator) from the drive unit (motor) and that opens up a lot of possibilities.
Diesel engines are very reliable and very safe. The addition of a large output generator reduces the "safeness" to the extent that we are dealing with very large voltages in a marine environment. That is acceptable on a merchant ship, and maybe in a Toyota, but it should give pause in the somewhat porous structure of a small boat. Remember, your tax dollars are being spent to train rescue workers on what not to cut, with their jaws of life, on those Toyotas. The conduit those cables run in are painted int. orange for a reason!
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  #20  
Old 10-21-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailaway21
...I don't think we're talking about just a charging system on steroids here. If we cannot get serious power out of the diesel-gen. set then i believe we're wasting our time. Low power means contemplating matters such as batteries as ballast.
Because of the relatively low power density of batteries, any cruising hybrid vessel needs to be able to generate the cruising power from fossil fuels. The batteries are nice for close quarters, brief transits, and powering Surf's porno screen and various other devices thru an inverter.

Solomon Tech. has gotten some very interesting results for reduced fuel consumption with their regenerative propellor on ocean crossings while sailing and then riding down the waves in regen mode.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailaway21
High power has certain safety concerns with it as anyone who's seen a large gen-set overspeed and fly apart. The common thread contains, "lucky to be alive". AC offers a 3-5% improvement in efficiency over DC and would probably be "safer" than DC. One advantage, of course, is that one could seperate the power unit (diesel-generator) from the drive unit (motor) and that opens up a lot of possibilities.
Sailaway, the Lagoon hybrid uses a dozen 12vdc batteries producing 144 volts in series (Solomon Technologies). They are already leveraging the efficiencies of high voltage on the hybrid vessels. Nigel Calder's new Malo 45 combines the high voltage and a recently available high voltage power distribution system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailaway21
...That is acceptable on a merchant ship, and maybe in a Toyota, but it should give pause in the somewhat porous structure of a small boat. Remember, your tax dollars are being spent to train rescue workers on what not to cut, with their jaws of life, on those Toyotas. The conduit those cables run in are painted int. orange for a reason!
That is a very real concern for me also, too !! I'm concerned when I ride in my friend's Toyota Prius. I also anticipate that we'll end up with a computer controlled power distribution system on the vessel that sometimes hides in fail safe mode and spits out a service code like my sputtering minivan does now.
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