It’s an innovative transmission and propulsion system: a small electric motor unit equipped with retractable-rudders propeller is installed directly on the rudder blade. This way, it replaces both diesel engine and traditional sail drive system.
Little is know about the technical specifications of this invention called E-Motion Rudder Drive (maybe, we’ll discover something more during METS in Amsterdam next November) but the first evident advantages seem to be low cost, low encumbrance and a great manoeuvrability. In fact, an engine put directly on the rudder blade gives more agility. Moreover, the system promises to be silent and with no environmental impact.
Power is 4 kW, the maximum speed of the boat reaches 6.1 knots (it weights 4.7 tons with no load) and self-sufficiency is about 30 miles at 4.5 knots. A full charge, using the normal electric socket on the quay, takes about three hours. Next to the wheels, it is also installed a traditional lever for power regulation (in the photo above) and a control panel.
Moreover, E-Motion Rudder Drive allows a benefit in terms of low maintenance and weight and even the possibility to check the charge level, the maintenance cycles, the boat’s speed and even the overall status of the system through a specific App available for all mobile devices.
The product seems to be suited to inner waters. Of course, many questions arise: what will be the sensation at the rudder with an engine on the rudder blade? What will the overall dragging be? Will it be more or less than a traditional sail drive?
Will it work? The only certain thing is that the system was conceived by three very important brands: Hanse (the group also includes Sealine, Dehler, Moody, Varianta and Fjord) Torqeedo and Jefa, the winner of the prestigious DAME Award in Amsterdam last year.