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Posted on October 20, 2010 by  & 

Plug-in hybrid sailboat powered by massive lithium ion battery pack

One of the world's largest plug-in hybrid sailboats, a Tag 60 catamaran, hit the water powered by new E Motion 18 kw motors and a massive lithium ion battery pack from International Battery.
Christened Tang, the 60 ft. carbon-fiber speedster is undergoing tests at Tag facilities in St. Francis Bay, South Africa.
"The initial thrust and response when engaging forward is vastly better than anything experienced with standard diesel propulsion," said Tim van der Steene, managing director of Tag Yachts. "It's quiet, and the power is there instantly. It goes hand-in-hand with sailing, which is about moving in harmony with nature, quietly, without polluting the environment."
Tang is scheduled to sail to her owner in Florida later this year and appear at the Miami sailboat show in 2011.
"This is a transformational combination of technologies," said Dave Tether, CEO of Electric Marine Propulsion (EMP). "Our E Motion hybrid system converts wind and solar energy into a practical power source for boat motors and auxiliaries. And International Battery's lithium cells provide the lightweight, high-capacity storage that really lets us take advantage of it."
Tag 60 at speed (CAD)

Speed, space and espresso

Designed by noted New Zealand naval architect Greg Young, the Tag 60 line combines high-speed sailing with wide-open interiors and just about every electrical appliance imaginable. Tang even carries an optional café-size espresso machine.
Main salon (CAD)
Standard-equipment amenities include two refrigerator-freezers, dishwasher, microwave, convection oven, electric/gas burner top, central vacuum, washer-dryer, icemaker, LED lighting, Bose entertainment system with 37-inch, flat-screen TV and, of course, air conditioning and watermaker. Appliances can run on European or U.S. AC standards, making the Tag 60 a truly international boat.

Motor and batteries

The new 18 kw motor has the same diameter and is slightly longer than the nine kw model but produces twice the power. Tang is the first boat to install the new motors, but the next Tag 60 may also, assuming the system performs as expected. The second boat is more than half completed, and a third is under construction.
Tang's 18 kw motors
Tang's lithium-ion main battery pack has a total energy capacity of 46 kilowatt-hours. That's more than twice the usable capacity of an 8D battery pack - the largest conventional size carried with the E motion system. Yet the lithium pack weighs roughly 40 percent less.
Tang's lithium batteries include 25.6 volt modules for house 24 v system and electric dinghy and 28.8 v modules in two parallel 23 kw strings for the main 144 v pack.
"We're very excited to work with EMP to provide the energy storage for their hybrid electric system in marine applications," said International Battery's CEO, Ake Almgren. "Using our large-format lithium prismatic cells as the building blocks, we can provide battery systems with high energy density, which means smaller footprints and lower weight. In addition, because we use a unique, environmentally friendly, water-based manufacturing process, our batteries will feel right at home storing clean, renewable energy for this hybrid vessel and others to follow."

Energy inputs

The main renewable energy input to the battery pack is electricity regenerated by wind power as the boat's propellers spin in the wake under sail. The props turn the 18 kw propulsion motors, which automatically become generators and send electricity back to the batteries.
Solar panels also can feed into the battery pack, although Tang is not equipped with them.
When there's not enough wind for recharging, Tang's twin 22 kw diesel generators kick in automatically, together or individually as needed. The generators are 144 vdc units that recharge the batteries directly without the normal energy loss incurred through a charger.
The batteries also can be charged with a 144 v charger that plugs into both 110 v 60 Hz or 220 v 50 Hz shore power. The charger can handle off-spec voltages and frequencies, a big advantage in out-of-the way ports with erratic supplies of electricity.
EMM controls all electrical functions from touch screen consoles at each helm station.
Tag employees dwarfed by hull show boat's enormous size.
Hull #1 heads for the paint shop. #2 is more than half finished, and #3 is underway.

Power outputs

The main power output from the battery pack goes to the twin propulsion motors. Battery electricity also goes to a DC-AC inverter that makes 110/220 v, 50/60 Hz alternating current for AC appliances, a DC-DC converter that steps down the voltage for 24 v and 12 v house power and a pair of 144 vdc hydraulic pumps.
The pumps power a hydraulic system that operates the rotating wing mast, centerboards, sheet winches, anchor windlass, dinghy platform and other hard-to-handle moving parts, including controllable-pitch feathering propellers.
Electrical power is routed through the system by a CANBUS-enabled energy management module (EMM). The EMM's sophisticated open architecture provides touch-screen control of individual system components from consoles at the port and starboard helm stations.
Tag 60 under sail (CAD). Props spin in wake, turn motors, regenerate electricity.
Rigged and ready, Tang is towed carefully to the launch site.
Sept. 21 launch. Visible below stern is hydraulically controllable-pitch propeller.
For more attend: Future of Electric Vehicles which uniquely covers the whole electric vehicle market - land, sea, air whether hybrid or pure EV - with emphasis on future breakthroughs. Everspring Global Ltd present on Single large capacity Lithium Air Cells for EVs and Hawkes Ocean Technologies and Hawkes Remotes Inc, and Carolina Electric Boats Inc., all present on electric water craft. Early Bird Bookers get a free copy of the new $3000 report, "Electric Buses and Taxis 2011-2021" and there are visits to KleenSpeed (200 mph Formula One pure electric racer, family EVs) and SunPods (solar powered charging stations).
Source: E Motion hybrids
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