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Instead of combustion engine bans: New marine hybrid propulsion systems are low-emission, efficient and offer performance and comfort

MAN Smart HYBRID Experience with V12
MAN Smart HYBRID Experience mit V12© MAN

A future-oriented drive solution for yachts was recently presented by engine manufacturer MAN: The so-called Smart Hybrid Experience is intended to offer the advantages of a conventional drive and expand them with the modern possibilities of electric motors and batteries. In addition to increasing efficiency and range, noise emissions should thus be reduced to zero; moreover, the battery-electric operation of the equipment should also be able to secure access to future water protection areas (Marine Protected Areas).

Recently we reported here that the Balearic regional government passed a law that regulates how Mallorca and neighboring islands will achieve the goals in the fight against climate change. In order to also bring the economy on Mallorca and the sister islands to a “green line”, only electric yachts are to be allowed to be rented out on Mallorca and the neighboring islands by 2030.

So it provides in any case currently a “draft for the amendment of the regional climate change law”, which was prepared by the Balearic Energy Ministry under Juan Pedro Yllanes, as the Mallorca newspaper reported on 26.10.2022. According to the law, boat rental companies are to gradually upgrade their fleets until they no longer produce emissions in eight years. This has led to an “outcry in the industry”, yacht rental companies are “angry” and would even speak of the “end for their industry”, headlined the Mallorca Newspaper (see our message “draft law bans internal combustion charter boats from 2030” dated 02/11/2022).

The Smart Hybrid Experience program is designed to offer the benefits of conventional propulsion and add modern capabilities

A forward-thinking powertrain solution that shouldn’t upset anyone and could even give the industry a new lease on life was recently unveiled by engine manufacturer MAN: The so-called Smart Hybrid Experience program is designed to offer the advantages of a conventional drive and expand them with the modern possibilities of electric motors and batteries.

Effect: In addition to increasing efficiency and range, it should be possible to reduce noise emissions to zero; moreover, the battery-electric operation of the systems should also be able to secure access to future water protection areas (Marine Protected Areas).

The modular system is geared to the customer’s needs and can be flexibly combined

The modular system is to be “individually oriented to the customer’s needs” and will be “specifically configured to that end,” MAN says; the “flexible combination of conventional marine engines as well as electric engines with batteries and on-board gensets” offers “countless possibilities for degrees of hybridization in recreational boating and the commercial sector.”

Based on the desired operating modes, the MAN hybrid system is said to be able to focus the driving profiles on performance, comfort or efficiency. Many individualizations are possible, says Dr. Matthias Schreiber, Head of MAN Engines, for example; as a system supplier, the engine manufacturer accompanies its customers “throughout the entire process chain – from the planning and concept phase through development to the technical implementation of the complex drive components as well as batteries and power electronics.”

There are different operating modes: battery and diesel-electric, cross-over, hotel and boost

Shipyards received a complete system from a single source. For service and maintenance, MAN Engines’ well-developed network of service stations in all major ports worldwide is also to be available.

For the configuration of the driving profiles, MAN Engines resorts to different operating modes, ranging from battery and diesel-electric modes to cross-over, hotel and boost modes. These drive configurations are said to make it possible to efficiently implement numerous driving and operating profiles.

 

Zero-emission mode of the MAN Smart HYBRID Experience
Zero-emission mode of the MAN Smart HYBRID Experience© MAN

 

Emissions should be able to be reduced to zero with the new system; when anchoring, there is “clean” and quiet electricity

In particular, this is to include the possibility of a particularly economical driving style, combined with an increase in range, but also the retrieval of additional power as a power boost, which is to be available to the customer as an option. The new hybrid system should also make it possible to reduce emissions to zero; it should also be possible to ensure a completely emission-free power supply when anchoring.

So they already exist, the sensible alternatives, so there can be no talk of an “end of the industry”, as feared by the boat rental companies on the Balearic Islands. Nevertheless, what has already been established on the road will – consequently – now probably also become reality on the water in the foreseeable future. In its new Climate Plan “Fit for 55”, the EU Commission calls for the year 2035 to completely reduce annual CO2 emissions from new motor vehicles to zero. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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