Interview with the owner of the only shipyards, commercially available yachts with hybrid propulsion installations
A perfect world where all vehicles moving on land, water and air, without disturbing the sounds of nature, not harming the environment, and people are not choking on exhaust, and so far only exists in the imagination and in the movies. But mankind is making confident steps in this direction, actively introducing electric motors and power plants in everyday life.
The electric motor, invented in 1834 by the Russian physicist Boris Semenovich Jacob, now is able to deliver incredible power. But on increasing the capacity of lithium-ion batteries which provide the necessary drive for Autonomous operation of the engine, working the whole world. And while many manufacturers are waiting for new discoveries is watching this process from the outside, brave confidently go forward his way.
Manufacturers equip the Tesla charging stations for their vehicles even thousands of locks and work hard on reducing the time of charging. And more demanding the movement range sea vessels are equipped with hybrid and diesel generators.
Greenline Yachts is the only brand commercially producing yachts with hybrid propulsion installations. The owner of the shipyard Vladimir Zinchenko — our compatriot — recently surprised everyone by turning crushed a deep crisis of the company in a successful growing brand. Four years ago, the shipyard went bankrupt, and today sends in Dusseldorf five world premieres, the most anticipated among them — Neo all-electric Greenline E-drive and Greeline 39 E-drive. If you visit in portorož (Slovenia), the owner of Greenline and Shipman will personally meet you and tell you about all the intricacies of yacht manufacturing, in which the latest developments and a huge heart. Perhaps his sincere attitude is one of the factors of the rapid success of the brand. And that Vladimir Zinchenko — the person who is definitely best able to tell about the features of electric motors and hybrid systems.
Vladimir, who are your customers? Who are these people who prefer electric motor and hybrid units?
Our customers are ordinary people who want to get a little more comfort than can be obtained from the boat with a piston engine.
The motors is a little more subtle. I would say that first you have a lot to listen to the customer, as a doctor, and then to make the diagnosis. Many people want electricity, but not all fully understand how it works and how to use it.
Clients often mistakenly believe that the main advantage of hybrid yachts — it saves on fuel and maintenance. Of course, this is true, but not only the economy forces people to choose a hybrid or electric motor.
What else the winner is the owner of innovative boats?
As we all know, a yacht is not a necessity. The yacht is beautiful and expensive toy that should bring joy and pleasure to its owner at the time when he’s with his family or friends take her on your vacation or weekend. Most readers know that holidays and weekends are not always enough to have a good rest and enjoy nature on the water expanses. So I want to spend these days or watch the best possible quality. And it is the high quality of the output you can provide the hybrid yacht.
There is a saying — “a yacht is not a home”, which means that the yacht cannot provide the same level of comfort as home. Owners of motor yachts know that electricity on Board is never enough, and the devices that you want to have on the boat, becoming more and more. A simple solution is to run a diesel generator, but in a lovely quiet Cove at anchor so I want to stay in silence and, as they say, to merge with nature. And the generator spits exhaust fumes, growls, vibrates and is annoying. At this moment comes to the aid of a hybrid.
Accumulated in the high-tech batteries, electrical energy will be spent at anchor for domestic consumption. This means that the refrigerator, air conditioning, dishwasher, washing machine, coffee maker, toaster and a Hairdryer for drying hair can be enabled at any time, without starting the diesel generator. The capacity of the batteries in the tens of kilowatts, and the stored energy will be enough to days to be at anchor and not think about charging.
But if we add all these to a couple of kilowatts of solar panels, complete energy independence your yacht is ensured.
Where and for what purposes is primarily relevant to the use of hybrid and electric boats.
Hybrid yachts have the same restrictions and vessels, and yachts with piston engines. For example, we have in the lineup have yachts OceanClass with a range of travel over two thousand miles of category A — open ocean. So with the hybrids is simple and clear: there are no restrictions.
Fully electric yacht, of course, have less autonomy, but that doesn’t make them less interesting.
Most of us spend time on the water during daylight hours: out of the Marina with friends, walked to the nearest Bay, dropped anchor or landed on the beach, fried shish kebabs, were bought, and by sunset came back home. In the evening, the Marina put in charge of the yacht, and by the next morning the battery is full again, and that means that your weekend continues!
The range on all-electric boat today is 20-80 nm. In most cases this is sufficient if the area navigation you select rivers and canals with a speed limit, or lake, in which, in addition to electric and sailing yachts, nothing else can be used. Skeptics will say: “Well, if you missed the time and spent more energy than planned. The wind rose and the waves, as we now return home?” The answer to this question we have: a diesel generator — the model with the additional “extension” of the path. It recharges the battery and allows you to continue driving at a speed of six knots with a range of up to 200 miles. In most cases, this speed is enough to get home in time for dinner.
And, of course, solar energy has not been canceled. The sun constantly fills battery free and clean solar energy.
Changing the attitude to this topic the Russians? Or is it still an abstraction, like 10 years ago?
The whole world is changing and with a great interest looks at the clean and alternative energy sources. With full confidence I can say that most of the orders of the Russians — is the yacht with hybrid plants. Of course, I’m talking about our yachts Greenline.
Unknown is always afraid. How reliable hybrids and electric motors? What surprises to expect from them?
At the stage of development and testing of surprises are possible. But next year marks the tenth anniversary of Greenline Yachts. During this period it produced about thousands of yachts and thousands of hybrid systems. Today we are releasing the fourth generation of hybrids, which became more powerful and more reliable than the previous one.
Look at the internal combustion engine: pistons, valves, liners — every minute in the combustion chamber there’s a thousand explosions. And now look at the electric motor: only two parts, a stator and a rotor. And one part fixed. These parts do not RUB and do not touch each other. Reliability of electric motors is much higher than any internal combustion engine.
In addition, the electric motor needs no maintenance. Exactly.
How far can one go using only the energy of the sun?
All yachts Greenline equipped with solar panels depending on the size of the roof. The total power is 1200 watts or 1800 watts. Enough energy to move at a speed of 2.5–3.0 knot. So in a clear summer day you can go solar about 15-20 nautical miles.
How does the loss of power from the battery? How much it will cost to get them replaced after 10 years of operation of the boat?
In the hybrid battery are the most expensive items and should be treated with care. We have developed a controller which ensures optimal charge and discharge of batteries. This greatly prolongs their service life. Today it is 2400 cycles charge/discharge. Suppose that every day will be one cycle (in real life this does not happen), and then the battery will lose 25% of its capacity. And it will happen in six and a half years. In reality, hybrid Greenline work at sea for ten years, and today it was replaced only a few panels of the first series.
Also do not forget that progress inexorably moves forward, and new, more powerful batteries that arrive on the market. We hope that ten years from now for the same money you can buy twice the battery capacity, or the same capacity will cost half the price.
In January of 2019 in the city of düsseldorf will premiere a one of a kind all-electric Greenline 39 E-drive. Tell us about it.
The creation of an electric of the yacht is not only to replace the diesel engine to the electric motor. Hydrodynamics of the hull should be optimal for electric traction, then you can get from the boat to the desired result. Initially, all yachts Greenline was developed for hybrid systems. That being said, our thing. When this year in September we presented a new yacht Greenline NEO E-drive to the exhibition at the lake Balaton, our Hungarian dealer ordered all-electric Greenline yacht 39 E-drive. A little more than two months — and that’s a yacht on the water, and we are very pleased with the performance. For the lake is very good. The maximum speed of 10-12 knots, and a cruising speed six knots is 60 miles.
In the engine compartment, we installed one Torqeedo Deep blue 80HP electric motor and two batteries of BMW I3 the total capacity of 60 kWh, and after the new year, we invite a new battery, the BMW I3 for 40 kWh each, as they say, for the same money. With new batteries we will increase the range of up to 80 nautical miles.
The owner of the vessel with the motor not spent on fuel and not pay taxes, which then remain costs?
The cost of maintenance of a boat is always one of the most sensitive issues for the owner. But here we can please. The motor and batteries do not need maintenance, so the maintenance of the yacht is the cost of Parking and the usual works, like on any other yacht: the application of neoblastic, replacement of zinc anodes… And for a week the solar panel fully charge the battery of your Greenline.
How do you see the yacht industry in ten years? What plans do you have?
Hybrid installation in the yachting industry is not something new. The first hybrid plant was built over a hundred years ago and was used on all diesel submarines. So boats and hybrids are old friends. But with the civilian fleet they met not so long ago, but immediately became friends. I am sure that hybrids will take a worthy place in the market of civil shipbuilding, because in this scheme no flaws.
In the hybrid yacht Greenline Yachts is today a global leader in the production and introduce technologies. We hope that in collaboration with VOLVO, Torqeedo and other strong partners, we will be able to stay on the crest of the hybrid wave. Follow our news and — welcome to düsseldorf: case 17, stand A42, where we will present eight yachts, five of which are world premieres.