Electrification specialist Equipmake has readied a range of high performance cost-effective advanced electric motors for the marine market.
The UK-based company primarily provides EV technology to automotive OEMs and specialist supercar manufacturers. With the marine world trailing industries such as automotive on emissions regulation and alternative propulsion strategy, Equipmake has brought its motors to the marine market, targeting electrified craft including RIBs, tugs and yachts.
The company’s APM motors incorporate many innovations and are believed to be the most power dense in global series production, use technology born out of Equipmake managing director Ian Foley’s career in top-level motorsport.
A former Lotus and Benetton F1 engineer, Foley’s research into electric motors and flywheels in the mid-2000s led to him play a key role in the development of Williams F1’s hybrid system, used in the 2009 F1 season. The resulting hybrid flywheel arrangement went on to further success in endurance racing with Porsche and Audi.
The high-speed flywheel developed for the Williams programme was effectively a composite electric motor, Foley applying the expertise gained to a new design: Equipmake’s APM range of ‘spoke’ electric motors.
These are permanent magnet motors that use a spoke architecture (so-called because the magnets are arranged like the spokes of a wheel) to bring a major cooling advantage. Because the motor can be kept cool, it can produce lots of power and torque, use less expensive magnet materials and conventional manufacturing methods, so can be made smaller, lighter and more cost-effective.
Ian Foley, managing director, Equipmake said: “From electric buses to supercars, the APM range of motors has made a step change to the efficiency and performance of our automotive clients’ products. Those same benefits – high power density and light weight, combined with an extremely compact package that includes integrated components such as the inverter and gearbox – are just as relevant to the world of marine.”
Equipmake offers two compact, power dense motors for marine applications, which both use the company’s architecture to maximise cooling capability.
The APM 120 has peak power of 125kW at 12,000rpm, continuous power of 75kW and peak torque of 130Nm. Weighing just 14kg, it has a power density of just under 9kW per kg. With an integrated gearbox, it measures just 200mm in length and 170mm in diameter.
The APM 200 has peak power of 220kW at 10,000rpm, continuous power of 110kW and peak torque of 450Nm. Weighing just 40kg, it has a power density of over 5kW per kg. With an integrated gearbox, it measures just 247mm in length and 318mm in diameter.
Both motors can be specified with or without an integrated gearbox and can be mounted horizontally or vertically. Equipmake also makes all supporting power control electronics – including its own high-performance inverter which incorporates the latest silicon carbide diode technology to improve power capability and enable the inverter to run at high switching frequencies.
Mr Foley added: “There is no doubt that the electrification of the marine industry will accelerate rapidly in the coming years. Our high power, compact and lightweight electric motors can be used in multiple applications, from hybrid luxury yachts – allowing totally silent, emission-free cruising whether at sea or for inland navigation – to hybrid tugs and fully electrified RIBs. They are highly adaptable yet cost-effective to produce and a rapid route to an electric future. What’s more, Equipmake can work with almost any marine business to create an entire, tailormade electric powertrain.”