Torqeedo and ZF have agreed to cooperate on electric systems for sailing yachts and passenger ships. ZF’s steerable sail drives will be integrated into Torqeedo’s Deep Blue electric drive system.
The companies plan to launch their first products on the market by the end of this year. In sailing yachts, for example, of up to 36 metres in length, the diesel generator is only to serve as a reserve unit. During sailing, the manoeuvrable ZF drive is to be used as a generator, the electricity is then stored in the Torqeedo batteries and managed by the Deep Blue system – for example, for the e-drive during running/manoeuvring or the power supply onboard. The ZF system is available with 50 or 100 kW drive power.
“ZF is continuing to expand its portfolio of environment-friendly marine propulsion solutions; the new fully electric propulsion system will combine ZF’s Steerable Pod Propulsion system (SPP) and Torqeedo technology to literally steer skippers into a cleaner, more sustainable future. The system will make docking not only intuitive and relaxed but also emission and noise-free,” said Federico Decio, Vice President ZF Marine Pleasure Craft, ZF Friedrichshafen AG.
In another part of the cooperation, urban ferries and water taxis will be electrified. The “climate impact of operation” for such boats and ships is to be reduced by 30 to 90 per cent, local pollutant emissions such as particulate matter are to be completely avoided. Like their electric land-lubber friends, electric motors in marine applications are similarly cheaper to run and maintain than their fossil-fuelled counterparts. This means that running costs and total expenditure is lower.
“Sailing yachts, water taxis and ferries are segments of the shipping industry for which there are compelling reasons to switch from combustion engines to cleaner electrical solutions,” says Torqeedo CEO and co-founder Christoph Ballin.
Although Maritime transport is responsible for 2.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions, these are projected to increase significantly if mitigation measures are not implemented swiftly. The European climate policy report from the European Commission states that: “Many technical and operational measures, such as slow steaming, weather routing, contra-rotating propellers and propulsion efficiency devices, can deliver more fuel savings than the investment required.”
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