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Old 07-30-2022, 05:27 PM   #161
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I think a related thing to remember is that an imperfect solution isn't a reason to do nothing. There is no perfect solution, and there is no single solution. There is no single silver bullet, so we need to use every bullet we have.
I agree, and just so that I am not misunderstood. I completely agree that something needs to be done and the US should ceratinly lead the way as we always have. If we don't, who will? I just remain pessimistic that it will make the needed impact. Don't mean to argue or offend anyone here, just something I feel strongly about as many of us do.

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Old 07-30-2022, 05:48 PM   #162
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Simi you are missing the point of a sailboat. It's not to make it electric powered instead of diesel. It can already cross oceans powered by the wind which is "free" and clean. (I know nothing is really free, but let's not get into that discussion). The point I was trying to make is that maybe sail power is a better and easier alternative than trying to electrify a trawler. A sailboat can have modest wind and solar for electricity, and a diesel as a last resort as Hippo pointed out.
For us the trawler platform was about comfort, space, load carrying ability and surprisingly economics.
Without ticking those boxes we weren't going to be out here for real.
Traveling marina to marina was simply not an option

I am not going to get the same comfort, space, load carrying ability on a sailing vessel unless we get into probably 70+ ft sailing yacht and probably 65ft catamaran.
Financially, they would cost 15x more + than what we have
Would be difficult to sail 2 up and we ain't getting any younger
And under motor probably burn as much as we do now

Of course if you are happy living in a small space with limited niceties, I agree, a 40 to 50 ft yacht is definately the more sensible approach vs electric.
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Old 07-30-2022, 05:58 PM   #163
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Thanks Simi. I think we are on the same page. I was not faulting you at all for your choice of transportation, I'm just a little surprised at some of the lengths people are talking about going to, when wind propulsion is a proven and available option, albeit, not perfect for every mission.
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Old 07-30-2022, 06:21 PM   #164
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@thecurioustraveler mentioned supercapacitor batteries:

https://kilowattlabs.com/solar-storage/

The 12V model (465Kw, all useable) is number 465-12-B-0.9C-TM-A-G, but I can't find a price on it. I would love to know more about these.

A side note: this is one of the best-ever threads for me; much more than boat-tech. Everything people write about here makes us think globally, and whole-cost/lifetime-cost. This is the future.

Supercaps have been around for a long time, and definitely have some very handy properties. i just gave it a quick look, and they appear to be about 4x the cost of LFP. So given the cost, why would they be interesting?


The big advantage of a supercap is that they can be charged and discharged VERY fast. Like in seconds to minutes. They are just limited in total energy storage capacity/cost. They also have a declining voltage as they discharge, unlike LFP (just as an example) which has a very constant voltage as it discharges. The varying voltage of a supercap makes it harder to pair with other equipment to make use of the stored energy.


Supercaps can make for really good start batteries. Starting an engine is a brief, high power event, so generally a good match. But it can be problematic if it's hard to start the engine and extended cranking is needed since they have limited total energy. Some application pair them with more conventional battery that can be used to quickly recharge the supercap, if needed. I have also seen them used in parallel with conventional batteries to absorb ripple current from the loads. They seem popular with the thundering car stereo crowd, but I have also seen them used to quell ripple current at the DC input to inverters. I'm not sure about the self discharge rate, and seem to recall that may have been a pro or a con, but I don't know which...
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Old 07-30-2022, 07:57 PM   #165
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I think a related thing to remember is that an imperfect solution isn't a reason to do nothing. There is no perfect solution, and there is no single solution. There is no single silver bullet, so we need to use every bullet we have.
Exactly!!
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Old 07-30-2022, 08:44 PM   #166
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Lifestyle, per capita income, living and working conditions, etc. We could legislate a lower standard of living to decrease our carbon footprint. Would you consider us more advanced if we do that? My point is, as other countries develop as we did, they will likely increase their carbon footprint as well, and their populations are many times what the US is, hence my concern that this "GLOBAL" problem will get much worse even if we improve our own situation.
Yes, blackandblue...

"... as other countries develop as we did, they will likely increase their carbon footprint as well, and their populations are many times what the US is, hence my concern that this "GLOBAL" problem will get much worse..."

While other societies progress/evolve/mechanize/electrify/become-vehicularized: It is surely that higher global volumes of CO2, methane, particulates and other unwanted influxes of gasses, chemicals and solid items will be thrust into atmosphere, oceans, lakes, rivers and onto/into land locations.

Therefore: It is up to we leaders in the United States of America, in coordination with our "True" Allies' leaders to to LEAD the world in new/inventive methods of filtering the atmosphere, improving the crumbling pH balance in as well as cleaning the oceans, replenishing the health of lakes/rivers and tending to humanly polluted tera firma areas.

Sure it's a Big-Tough job! But, it is also a Do-Or-Die proposition... that we all must think clearly about. There is no acceptable outcome other than for humanity to score a Win-For-Survival in the long run

Get Ready Folks! The Gun's Gone Off!! Our Global Climate Re-Stabilization Race for Civilization's Survival is Underway... Quickly Gaining Speed!!!
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Old 07-31-2022, 12:21 AM   #167
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Given what’s on the table today, Hydrogen-Electric Technology is the future. Like everything else, it will take time and investment to develop. You may not be able to envision everything that requires torque to eventually be human or hydrogen-electric powered. It is on the horizon regardless of those with limited vision and how selective Google searchers. Billions are being invested into hydrogen-electric technology by the largest companies in the world. The writing is on the wall but you need to have your eyes open and the ability to understand the immense need. The only thing that can change this trajectory is something nobody today has any knowledge of. The physics and engineering will be as quick as the development of electricity.
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Old 07-31-2022, 12:28 AM   #168
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@TT: thanks—I have not been able to get prices on supercaps here, so far. 4 x Lithium? I think in my use case, far better to stick to simple FLA (Trojan T-105s in my case). I believe the self-discharge rate is excellent, so a pro.
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Old 07-31-2022, 12:38 AM   #169
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How quickly will we adopt EV's? Really quickly but where depends on the government. Much like the push for hydrogen in California, Norway is taking the lead in EV adoption.
Sixty-five percent of new passenger cars sold in Norway in 2021 were electric; in addition, 22% were plug-in hybrids. Put differently, only 14% of new cars were sold without a plug.

For all the promise of hydrogen there are some unfortunate truths. While relatively energy dense by weight, it is very bulky. That means extreme pressure to store it, most trucks choose 700Bar. Even then it is 3 times as bulky as the equivalent diesel.
Then you have to deal with how small the molecule is, it will happily leak out of a steel tank.
Then there is the whole efficiency thing as discussed above.
This graph gets rolled out often to compare hydrogen FCEVs to EVs.
Click image for larger version

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Old 07-31-2022, 12:49 AM   #170
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700bar; that's incredible pressure. And three times as bulky as diesel? Solar–hybrid (diesel) still looks overall the best bet for cruising boats, for now.

I have even been considering replacing the KAD-300s with much smaller Nannis and selling the Volvos while they are still worth something. But that's still going to be much more expensive than simply using the vessel as-is, judiciously. Thanks for the quick overview of the efficiencies of H.
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Old 07-31-2022, 09:44 AM   #171
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Been an avid sailor much of my life. Sail isn’t that green. Benefits include no artificial noise or vibration. Have sat with owners of Dashew 64s and other efficient motor boats. Annual budget by displacement is about the same I’d any blue water is involved. Costs are about the same. GRP hulls are the opposite of green as sails have been for over a century with the move away from natural fiber clothes. Worst is the current crop of laminated sails. Now a days virtually all line, blocks, clutches and other sailing paraphernalia involves synthetics and plastics. Service life of that and sails is much shorter than anything used on a motor boat except dock lines. As 1x19 SS wire is replaced by synthetics even true for standing rigging. We sailed as both of us enjoyed the game of making the boat go using just wind. Also most well designed sailboats are faster under sail than power. Still most coastal sailors don’t . Energy used to make a sailboat is greater, more plastics and synthetics that are not recyclable are made. HCs and co2 is released. Sailing is not a purely green activity. Maybe with resorcinol glued wood and natural fiber sails but not the modern cruising boat. The Dashew at least had a recyclable hull.

Read this stuff about kite assisted powerboats. Suspect they will be used once or twice then only if the engine(s) fail. Most cruising is short handed. Flying a kite requires attention. Also work to set up and more work to strike. All weather is local. A kite can drive you under before you can strike or cut free. Want one…..have a good time. Hope you don’t see a white squall. Even with no kites or other down wind sails the “Pride of Baltimore “ was driven down and sank in minutes.
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Old 07-31-2022, 10:42 AM   #172
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I am grateful their are people with the courage and the resources to step into the void and attempt things that are not "tried and true". This is where the innovation that we need will come from.

If solar cell developers wait for battery tech to improve, and the battery industry waits for the fuel cell tech to arrive, and the fuel cell folks wait for the flux capacitor....our children's quality of life will be drastically less than ours. This is is no longer a problem for our great-great grandchildren.

Some people see the doughnuts, some people only see the holes.
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Old 07-31-2022, 10:49 AM   #173
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Some people see the doughnuts, some people only see the holes.
"MMMMMMmmmmmm Dooooonuts......" Homer Simpson
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Old 08-01-2022, 02:38 PM   #174
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Been an avid sailor much of my life. Sail isn’t that green. Benefits include no artificial noise or vibration. Have sat with owners of Dashew 64s and other efficient motor boats. Annual budget by displacement is about the same I’d any blue water is involved. Costs are about the same. GRP hulls are the opposite of green as sails have been for over a century with the move away from natural fiber clothes. Worst is the current crop of laminated sails. Now a days virtually all line, blocks, clutches and other sailing paraphernalia involves synthetics and plastics. Service life of that and sails is much shorter than anything used on a motor boat except dock lines. As 1x19 SS wire is replaced by synthetics even true for standing rigging. We sailed as both of us enjoyed the game of making the boat go using just wind. Also most well designed sailboats are faster under sail than power. Still most coastal sailors don’t . Energy used to make a sailboat is greater, more plastics and synthetics that are not recyclable are made. HCs and co2 is released. Sailing is not a purely green activity. Maybe with resorcinol glued wood and natural fiber sails but not the modern cruising boat. The Dashew at least had a recyclable hull.

Read this stuff about kite assisted powerboats. Suspect they will be used once or twice then only if the engine(s) fail. Most cruising is short handed. Flying a kite requires attention. Also work to set up and more work to strike. All weather is local. A kite can drive you under before you can strike or cut free. Want one…..have a good time. Hope you don’t see a white squall. Even with no kites or other down wind sails the “Pride of Baltimore “ was driven down and sank in minutes.
I'm the deluded fool who is studied an electric drive for something very similar to on as S Dashew's hull forms mentioned above by Hippocampus, aka long and narrow but still lots of useable space inside. Even with their efficiency advantages, a full blown electric drive is dysfunctional on account of range (50-150 miles max). Big batteries though do have some advantages. Short trips on electric only, easy dynamic positioning, no dedicated generator and very long periods of silence at anchor (almost indefinite with solar top up). Disadvantages, cost, weight, complexity and you probably need a hybrid drive to have sufficient charging capacity. Still with the 1000 mile EV battery on a 3-5 year or so horizon the picture will slowly change. Though, given my age, I'll probably risk smelling of diesel till by final breath.
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Old 08-02-2022, 05:36 AM   #175
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Greatly appreciate your posts Chris as someone putting their money where their mouth is. Still, hybrid (probably parallel) diesel electric should be a viable option. Pure diesel when it’s advantages can be best utilized, pure electric for the short hops, alternating between the two allowing the diesel to run the electric motor backwards when permissible, use “green electricity”from shore power if available and meets your cruising plans. . As battery tech advances change the bank when it makes sense. The service life of panels is long enough they will pay for themselves even at current prices. Maybe we’ll be up to tier 10 by the time of your demise but so what if you are still running a lower tier.
Fundamental issue is whether a hybrid system meets your needs. Continue to think that’s only true when hull efficiency is maximized and weight minimized. Personally I’ve drunk the Nordhavn koolaid. They are my concept of a capable blue water, owner operated power cruising boat. But long, lean and light has compelling advantages. Think those advantages allow hybrid propulsion to be a viable solution.
I’m a dust farter too. I recently bought a heavy SD hull for which diesel is the only viable option. I’m just hoping economics permits me to use it for long term cruising until they throw dust in my face. I also worry about its residual value to my descendants. Think for many of us those are real world concerns. Believe that’s another reason to explore hybrid if involved in new construction.
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Old 08-02-2022, 08:33 AM   #176
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There ought to be a peddling and/or rowing "electric-generator" seat positioned on every boat! Wherefrom all persons on the boat take turns working out... while producing charge-electricity!

Not only would it keep us trim... but importantly too... each person's workout would help keep the batt bank charged! And, then, there is always a way to recharge batts... even if all other charging methods were to fall asunder.

For families with kids - great fun! "The Electric-Generator Seat" could have awards of points earned from kids' competitions. And, parents could have prizes [ca$h works well!] for the most volts into batts or the highest amps maintained for a period of time!!

Talk about clean, green boat energy production!

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Old 08-02-2022, 10:23 AM   #177
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Someone stole your idea

https://pedalcruise.com/connecticut/
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Old 08-04-2022, 06:52 AM   #178
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Someone stole your idea

https://pedalcruise.com/connecticut/


That is too funny!!! It's similar to the group bicycle beer tours offered in some cities, with large carts pedaled by groups of people bar-hopping (I guess it being human-powered somehow gets around drunk driving laws).

https://www.wsj.com/video/pedal-powe...D03800A27.html

I think a pedal cruise would be a lot of fun - for people younger than I am. I love bicycling, pedal 15-20 miles a day. But a boat is a very heavy object to move through the water. Water has about 800 times more resistance than air. Once the thing gets moving it could be OK, but I imagine it would get tiring after a short while (at least for my aging body).
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Old 08-14-2022, 07:22 AM   #179
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That's the same as a fixed speed generator would consume when producing 25kw.





You need to look at the energy equation for the system. That's the inescapable physics involved, and the clearest way to assess efficiency.


- It takes a certain amount of energy to move the boat at a certain speed. It doesn't matter if it's an electric or diesel or peddle power, it takes the same amount of energy to move the boat that speed. Don't be fooled into thinking that electric propulsion is more efficient when you are really just moving the boat slower. Moving slower reduces the energy requirement, not switching to an electric drive.



- That energy has to come from somewhere, and let's look at the case of direct diesel drive vs this variable speed generator. First, a diesel consumes fuel 90% based on the HP or kWh power output, not based on rpm, and not based on engine size. There is some variation, but it's quite small. With direct diesel drive, the engine shaft power produced directly drives the prop. So power produced (shaft power) is directly converter to boat movement. I'm ignoring shaft friction and prop efficiency because they will be the same regardless of electric vs direct drive.


- Now with the variable speed generator, or a fixed speed generator for that matter, the engine shaft power generates electricity with let's say a 10% loss. That electricity then drives an electric motor again creating shaft power, but with another 10% loss. If you have a really good generator end, really good VFD electronics, and a really good electric motor, the loss from diesel engine shaft power to electric motor shaft power might only be 15% instead of 20%. But the bottom line is that only 85% of the diesel shaft power appears as shaft power to the prop to create boat movement.


So you have created a less efficient system, not a more efficient system. The advantage is that it can be powered by solar in addition to the diesel generator. If you can provide 15% of your propulsion energy via solar, then you will have recovered the lost 15% and be back to break even. At this point you will have a significantly more complex and expensive propulsion system that is equally efficient to a direct drive. If you can produce 25% of your propulsion power from solar, you now have a boat that is 10% more efficient. Also keep in mind that captured solar energy has to be stored in a battery, removed from the battery, and fed through the same VFD+electric motor, so those losses need to be accounted for.



But I ran a few numbers in this or another thread on the subject and it looked like solar that can realistically be collected on a boat is only about 10% of the propulsion energy. There were some assumption about "duty cycle", i.e. how much time you spend underway vs available solar charging hours.



Someone noted that electric boats work if your operation will be slow speed and for short duration. The physics above is why. Going slow requires less energy in the first place, and has nothing to do with being electric. Short duration is a very low duty cycle allowing enough time between operation to capture renewable energy.
I think the important thing to consider, particularly for the early adopters is that some of them appear willing to go slower in order to accommodate the electric operation. I “like” the idea of being green. But what I would really be after with an electric boat is a quiet ride, similar to a sail boat, without the hassle of learning how to sail. I think I would be happy with a 60-80 mile range per day, with enough energy to keep me comfortable at night. But then you have to recharge somehow, and regardless of how many panels you can stack on a boat they don’t work at night. So back to carrying diesel for the recharge, and listening to an engine run for some period of time.
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Old 08-14-2022, 07:52 AM   #180
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Or a fuel cell.

Seems some folks frown upon wind generators. Will say in many parts of the world wind over 10kts (the knee in most wind generators power curve) s available 24/7. We spent winters in the eastern Caribbean and summers in New England. Our experience was the same as Fatty Arbuckles’. The day is ~12h as you near the equator year round. Longer in the summer the further north you are but there’s less wind general as you move north. So we got more production from 2 wind generators compared to two house size high efficiency solar panels when down south for winter.. More from the panels when up north for summer.
Our hotel loads were entirely covered including free use of the watermaker with a bit extra. Still needed the genset for AC. We ridded ourselves of the extra electricity with heat sinks.
In a power boat setting would eliminate PB ballast and substitute batteries. Our habits had us staying in one spot for 3-5 days on average. Believe in an efficient design that would allow 25- 50nm mile transit on electric alone. Yes, energy conservation would be required such as brief dehumidifier runs rather than constant AC. But even allowing for genset an hour once every day or three to allow occasional AC a near zero footprint when in coastal anchor out mode. Of course connected to shore power there’s no limitations on AC.
Current power boat design seems somewhat limited n natural ventilation c/w sail. We open bth pilot house doors and all ports so get decent ventilation. Still not comparable to the prior sailboat with its wind scoops and ports that could be left open even in rain if not excessively wind driven.
Wind generators have come a long way. More efficient, quiet and nearly no maintenance. A powerboat maximizing area for solar(much greater problem for sail) and with 2 to 4 wind generators could even be grid free following many peoples programs. The engines come on for passage or when speed is required. The rest electric motor.
Requires a change in gestalt but unlike land transportation no additional land based infrastructure.
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