Steyr Motors GMBH has won this year's DAME award with its Diesel Electric Hybrid System

Steyr Motors GMBH has won this year’s DAME award with its Diesel Electric Hybrid System (DEHS). Intended initially for displacement craft between 1.5 and 20 tonnes using Steyr’s own diesels of between 55hp-285hp, DEHS interposes a 48V motor generator between the engine block and the gearbox.

This provides three propulsion modes: plain diesel; pure electric, and ‘boost’- during which both the diesel engine and the electric motor drive the propeller – normally for short periods of acceleration. Whenever the main engine is running the generator charges the battery bank. It is also used to start the main engine, eliminating the need for a separate starter motor.

The electrical power source is a 48V bank of lead acid or lithium ion batteries of up to 70 amp hours. Steyr sees a wide variety of applications for its hybrid system, from auxiliary power for sailing yachts to canal cruisers to work boats which need to loiter between jobs to nature watching vessels and even government agency craft requiring a ‘stealth’ mode of operation.

Sales manager Hubert Boxleitner said, “During this undoubtedly difficult time for the recreational industry in general, new and exciting products are more important than ever. Our Diesel Electric Hybrid System offers new possibilities for a wide range of boats and addresses some of the environmental concerns that the industry is keen to address.