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Old 06-11-2013, 07:21   #61
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

The sub contractor for the hybrid system that is used on the Isara catamarans can be viewed at www.hybrid-marine.co.uk This is the Yanmar warranted system. The guys there are very good about answering questions via email and forwarding additional info.
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Old 06-11-2013, 07:24   #62
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

DeckOfficer...thanks for the great info. I've been super busy but hope to do more research soon.
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Old 06-11-2013, 07:53   #63
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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Originally Posted by leski View Post
I'm not entirely sure, it does look similar. One of the other posts here did mention it a while ago but i can't find it now, try emailing them at info@isarayachts.com maybe they can verify that. There isn't a lot of info on the website re hybrid though. Sorry i can't be of more help. I am going to try and see one and also find out if its being used elsewhere - the lagoon one sounded good and....!
Will you have two engines or just one?
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Old 07-11-2013, 00:13   #64
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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My priorities are
-Minimal cost and maintenance ( I don't want to be dragged down by the maintenence costs of it)
This priority heavily favors a normal engine arrangement. Hybrid systems are expensive to buy and maintain and are not reliable. For "blue water" you need reliable and it needs to be repairable anywhere.

Quote:
-Sailing ability would not be as important as living space for example, but I'd need to be able to sail it single handed
If sailing performance is low than motoring performance needs to be high. This wont be the case with with most hybrids.

Quote:
- Self sufficiency- I'd like a water maker large enough to produce water for an everyday shower and other appliances to make me feel at home, while cruising for a couple of months time.
This will bo no probs with an electric watermaker. A decent solar and wind system will be enough to keep you in water when you learn to use it sparingly. Also you may want to re evaluate the sailing performance criteria. If you sail better, you will motor less. Less motoring means less dependency on getting fuel.

Quote:
Which is why I became interested in an electric propulsion system similar to the one on Moonwave /gunboat 60. To my understanding this, combined with solar power could provide my self sufficient needs and enough power for various appliances.
The idea of being self sufficient is good, but hybrid will not get you there. We spent a year cruising the same area as you, and we used $2.50 of diesel per day on average with only 80c per day being used for propulsion. The remaining majority was used to power our generator. We had an electric watermaker and showered everyday. Our boat only came with a very small solar array and for about $2000 in solar panels and a wind gen this value would be reduced to almost zero. Leaving only 80c per day for propulsion.

Can you really reconcile the negatives of a hybrid system for the sake of 80c per days worth of fuel? I know I cant.

Just take a look at existing examples of these setups. The only thing that they seem to have in common is huge expense and disappointed owners selling their boats at huge losses, or reverting back to conventional systems. The technology is not ready yet, but I do applaud determined individuals for giving it a go.

1992 Fioleau FIOLLEAU - CRUISING CAT Sail New and Used Boats for

Quote:
THE OWNERS NARRATIVE REGARDING THE SELECTION OF “HARMONY’S” ELECTRIC PROPULSION DRIVE FOLLOWS:
“When we purchased Harmony in 2000 she needed to have both Yanmar diesel propulsion motors replaced.
We choose to repower with the then recently available Solomon Technologies electric drive system. Their engineering indicated a Fischer-Panda 10kw 144VDC genset and two Homewood 6 hp 144VDC propulsion motors. As well as ten Lifeline 4D AGM batteries and Solomon Technologies proprietary controls and switching. Diesel consumption was greatly reduced, almost by half.
Repeated problems including overheating of the genset had it soon replaced with a Fischer-Panda 15kw 144VDC genset (now more conservatively rated at 13kw for continuous use.) This FP 15kw was based on a Kubota 1105. Harmony was capable of 5.5 kts sustained on one motor and 6.5 kts sustained on both. Unless severe conditions, running under power at sea was invariably with one motor because two motors loaded the genset increasing fuel consumption beyond any gain in speed.
When this system failed, we recommitted to electrical propulsion and hired an independent marine electrician to assist in the engineering design of a new electrical propulsion drive system for Harmony based on our prior experience. DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS:
If you want to use electrons, you need to generate electrons. With the Solomon system we could run the motors off the batteries for only a short time realistically. When the voltage went down the motors were less efficient, etc. Also, we eventually had to replace the electrons and would be listening to the genset later anyway. So we always started the genset first, then began motoring. Why carry around 3/4 ton of batteries? So we can use light weight highly efficient 144VDC motors?
If you can’t do all repairs on drive system, you’ll want to find someone locally. Even in the the largest towns in the Bahamas, no one wanted to touch or work on the 144VDC system. In no sense was 144VDC considered standard usage.
When a prime mover fails, redundancy is desired. As a catamaran Harmony was designed with two prime movers. With both v.1 and v.2 we had only one prime mover, and when the genset failed we were incapacitated.
To satisfy the above considerations we now have: Two PHASOR K3-12kw 240VAC gensets. Based on Kubota 1005 w Stamford-Newage backends Two US Motors 10hp 240VAC 3-phase motors. Switching allows either genset to power either motor.
A better match with larger motors and an appropriately sized slightly smaller genset will likely give higher speed and better fuel consumption.”
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Old 07-11-2013, 09:35   #65
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

Cotemar: Yes, our system will have 2 diesels/2 electric motors. You have the right drawing posted there.

dennisail: your comments about the negatives re: hybrid systems are correct if only aimed at serial hybrids that don't have redundant systems (some of the first ones failed as a result). However your comments do not apply at all to modern parellel systems. Hardly any cost or weight difference with a parellel hybrid system vs. 2 diesels + a diesel generator. With a modern parellel system you have of the advantages of having twin diesels...because you HAVE twin diesels (no diesel generator). But in addition you have 2 electric motors/generators. If an electric motor or one of the diesels fail, then you still have 3 other power sources + sails.
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Old 07-11-2013, 17:45   #66
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

Will your system allow direct mechanical drive of each diesel straight to the shaft?

I agree some advancements are being made, but its still over complicated and expensive for marginal gains at best. What do you expect your system will do that a regular system cant? With lithium batteries and high power inverters I don't see the need for a gen set anyway. Some high power alts on the regular engines will get rid of the gen set.

A regular sail boat with diesel engines and solar/wind gen is a hybrid already. It uses wind, and diesel for propulsion. It uses wind, and solar for power generation with diesel as a backup. Adding an electric motor for a 3rd form of propulsion (the stored power coming from diesel anyway) does not appear to have a decent cost vs benefit, especially when diesels are so reliable and a cat has 2 anyway! Solar and wind gen provides enough energy to live aboard, but there will not be enough left over to do any real motoring besides anchoring and docking.

So to me it appears that the only benefit is you don't need to run an engine to dock or anchor, but you will probably need to run it later anyway to top the batteries back up. Personally I would rather listen to the engine before, rather than after anchoring.

Either way I am sure you have thought it all through and will be happy with it. It just doesn't add up for me.
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Old 07-11-2013, 18:09   #67
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

I do think it may work out in some cases, such as a racer cruiser with one diesel with large charging capacity on one side, then just an electric on the other. Lithium batteries can go on the side with the electric motor to balance the weight. That way you have only one diesel aboard for weight, but you can still maneuver and have the ability to generate power. Think of it as a mono with a bow thruster. Does anyone with an electric bowthruster claim to have a hybrid lol? Extended motoring would be done on the single diesel, which is the way everyone does it anyway.
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Old 08-11-2013, 06:34   #68
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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I do think it may work out in some cases, such as a racer cruiser with one diesel with large charging capacity on one side, then just an electric on the other. Lithium batteries can go on the side with the electric motor to balance the weight. That way you have only one diesel aboard for weight, but you can still maneuver and have the ability to generate power. Think of it as a mono with a bow thruster. Does anyone with an electric bowthruster claim to have a hybrid lol? Extended motoring would be done on the single diesel, which is the way everyone does it anyway.
Good points. Yes, our system allows the diesel to directly apply power to the shaft drive. There's simply an electric motor between the two; a clutch can activate the e-motor to either power the vessel or hydro-generate loads of power while sailing. While hybrids (whether cars or boats) are not for everyone, they are for some. I appreciate it when posters do some research on them before providing strong advice to stay away from hybrids. Your most recent post shows that you are doing that research
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Old 08-11-2013, 11:13   #69
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

As a cat owner, when you can go from 3 diesels (2 propulsion and one AC gen set) to one, it is a good thing as weight kills a cat's performance. Now on to the weight of the batteries. If you need 200 a-hr of usable storage for the good life, here is the difference between Odyssey AGM and LiFePO4 cells. With LA not wanting to be discharged below 50% and very slow charge acceptance for bulk and much slower for topping off the last 20%, you will find yourself running the LA bank between 20% and 50% DOD. So to get those usable 200 a-hr your LA bank needs to be 666 a-hr or at least (12) of the PC 1800 for a 48 volt bank. This will weigh 1586 lbs. To have the same usable a-hr with LiFePO4 cells would require (16) of the 300 a-hr cells for a weight of 338 lbs.

Remember this is a 48 volt system so 200 usable a-hr is 9.6 usable kw-hr.
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Old 30-03-2014, 11:59   #70
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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Originally Posted by bryguy67 View Post
The sub contractor for the hybrid system that is used on the Isara catamarans can be viewed at www.hybrid-marine.co.uk This is the Yanmar warranted system. The guys there are very good about answering questions via email and forwarding additional info.
Bryan, I wanted to let you know that when we were at Strictly Sail in Miami, we talked to Yanmar's representative about this, and he double-checked with his main office too. He said that any hybrid system, including hybrid-marine.co.uk, is not warranted by Yanmar, or connected to Yanmar in any way.
While we were there in Miami, we went down the dock to Cris at Isara to ask him about this, because we thought that Isara was telling us that Yanmar supported Isara's hybrid system.
It seems to us that the hybrid system that Isara is using is going to be completely independent from a warranty point of view.
Since we're not going with an Isara or a hybrid on our cat, we didn't go this far, but you may want to double-check with Yanmar to be sure the way Isara plans to link the Yanmar diesel engines with the hybrids won't in any way jeopardize your Yanmar warranty.
We are hopeful that well-functioning hybrid systems are coming for our size catamarans, and you are probably going to be one of the pioneers who make it happen. I hope what we learned in Miami helps you to avoid problems being so cutting edge.
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Old 01-04-2014, 22:17   #71
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
As a cat owner, when you can go from 3 diesels (2 propulsion and one AC gen set) to one, it is a good thing as weight kills a cat's performance. Now on to the weight of the batteries. If you need 200 a-hr of usable storage for the good life, here is the difference between Odyssey AGM and LiFePO4 cells. With LA not wanting to be discharged below 50% and very slow charge acceptance for bulk and much slower for topping off the last 20%, you will find yourself running the LA bank between 20% and 50% DOD. So to get those usable 200 a-hr your LA bank needs to be 666 a-hr or at least (12) of the PC 1800 for a 48 volt bank. This will weigh 1586 lbs. To have the same usable a-hr with LiFePO4 cells would require (16) of the 300 a-hr cells for a weight of 338 lbs.

Remember this is a 48 volt system so 200 usable a-hr is 9.6 usable kw-hr.
Deckofficer.

Have you seen the deep Blue hybrid system Torquedo is testing.

Deep Blue Hybrid, hybrid propulsion system, sailing catamarans

They are using Johnson LI batteries using multiple small cylindrical cells with built in BMS.

Lithium battery technology

Cheers
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Old 02-04-2014, 10:12   #72
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

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Deckofficer.

Have you seen the deep Blue hybrid system Torquedo is testing.

Deep Blue Hybrid, hybrid propulsion system, sailing catamarans

They are using Johnson LI batteries using multiple small cylindrical cells with built in BMS.

Lithium battery technology

Cheers
Thanks for the link. I knew about the Deep Blue outboards but wasn't aware of the Deep Blue Saildrives. It is what I expected someone to do in a post I made a couple of years ago, whereas the galley and dinghy would also be all electric, doing away with gasoline and propane onboard.

Doesn't surprise me that Torqeedo teamed up with Gunboat. Wish I had that kind of scratch. http://www.moonwave-systems.com/
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Old 02-04-2014, 13:49   #73
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

The Torqeedo developments are really interesting. They also have the 40HP Deep Blue motors as shaft drives, which interest me more for our cruiser. Just waiting to see what they do about regeneration on the feathering/folding props. It will probably be similar to OceanVolt controller in regeneration mode.

But the direction they are heading with total vendor support & warranty for all system components is exactly the right thing for us cruisers, and is the missing piece of the puzzle as far as I'm concerned.

When this is delivered, given the reliability and lack of maintenance of industrial electric motors with built in system diagnostics, I'm having trouble understanding why you would bother having the redundant diesel engines with small electric motors.

At this point I would rather be able to ditch the diesels altogether and for tropical cruising, rather invest in serious solar and a small reliable/robust diesel generator (yes - I have found one here in Oz) for extended motoring and quick charging of LiFePO4 bank. It seems the best option for efficiency, given the characteristics of Lithium batteries.

What concerns me about diesels going into the future, say the next decade, is the trend in the South Pacific towards a supply problem for diesel fuel in the Island nations. Many of them are dumping their diesel generators for electricity and putting in big solar arrays with LiFePO4 banks. Solar electric motors (with generator back up for extended motoring) seems to be the way to go. Anyone else thinking in this direction?
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Old 02-04-2014, 14:28   #74
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

That is what the Gunboat "Moonwave" has done, along with how the system will be integrated for new builds. The LiFePO4 bank is the means of all power and propulsion, with solar and regen for charging. The pods can pivot so that the pitch of the prop is facing the flowing water stream, like how we used to have a 2nd prop shaft for charging. The single diesel gen set doesn't produce AC power, as the inverter is sized for all loads, but rather produces DC only for battery charging or extended motoring. This allows the diesel to run at its best rpm, and not an rpm dictated by the AC frequency desired. You save a lot of weight per kw output when the diesel runs at 2900 rpm vs 1800 (or 1500 for 50 cycle AC).
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Old 02-04-2014, 14:41   #75
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Re: Electric propulsion on catamarans

http://magazine.sfpe.org/content/lit...attery-hazards
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_...ttery_problems

Fascinating trend discussed, maybe real potential for my future boat. But what about the hazards?
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