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ZF Presented New Driveline Solutions at METSTRADE

At this year’s METSTRADE, ZF presented its comprehensive marine transmission portfolio, which includes the brand new ZF 400 transmission model range for outputs up to a maximum 735kW, and the ZF Sail Drive SD15 drive unit for partially motorized sailboats.

These new products will enable ZF to offer manufacturers and ship captains the right solution for a plethora of applications.

The completely new ZF 400 marine transmission family further expands ZF’s portfolio of innovative driveline solutions for seagoing vessels. The model series is rated up to 735kW and covers a range of possible transmission ratios and layout configurations. Since it can be installed in a down angle, integrated V, remote V or parallel configuration (also available for work vessels), shipyards, shipbuilders, naval architects and fleet owners enjoy great flexibility when designing or retrofitting motorized ships, such as yachts or fishing boats. With a power density of up to 0.3195kW/rpm, the ZF 400 is the perfect fit for a broad range of recreational and commercial applications.

The transmission family is already meeting the most important standards of international classification organizations. Additional approval type tests can be arranged according to customer demand.

Integrated into the ZF 400 is ZF’s Supershift2 shifting technology. This improved clutch pack design negates the need for an additional hydraulic circuit, resulting in fast shifting response and smooth gear changes even at low speed. Customers can also order an optional embedded electronic control unit for better proportional valve adjustment, granting even smoother shifting and trolling. A smart alert feature helps users schedule maintenance appointments predictively. The ZF 400 series is furthermore compatible with an e-motor (installed in a sandwich configuration), allowing the vessel to cruise locally emission-free. This reduces fuel consumption, noise and pollution.

Sail Drives (SD) by ZF offer skippers a highly efficient and comfortable system for motoring while not under sail. ZF’s long standing experience with this type of propulsion has led to an important addition to its existing range of sail drives. The SD15, a larger version of the tried and true SD12, can handle up to 110kW engine output. Designed to support contemporary and advanced engine interfaces, the SD15 offers boat builders increased design flexibility, as the engine can be positioned facing the bow or the stern. No particular settings or alignments are necessary.

The propulsion system is robust and reliable and can be matched with a large range of fixed or foldable propellers. The SD15 propels the vessel powerfully both in forward and reverse with the help of a hydraulically actuated multidisc wet clutch. The exceptional efficiency of the SD15 is obtained through a design that positions the propeller exactly parallel to the moving direction of the hull of the vessel. This reduces the hydrodynamic resistance of the immersed section of the drive and maximizes thrust efficiency.

In addition to the new SD15, ZF is also expanding its Sail Drive series with the optional integrated manoeuvring system SPP (ZF Steerable Pod Propulsion). SPP is simple to install and maintain and makes docking a sail boat as easy as parking a car. SPP combines a completely rotatable submerged Sail Drive leg with the bow thruster of the vessel. Using ZF’s Joystick Manoeuvring System (JMS) an intuitive joystick-and-throttle based interface, vessel handling is simplified. For instance, the operator can vary speed simply through steering knob movements. This makes docking, mooring and anchoring comfortable and reliable, even on busy waterways and in the tightest of mooring slips.