Diesel outboard development agreement

13 Feb 2017

The CXO300 will be tested by the US Coast Guard as part of its research into diesel outboard engine technology

The CXO300 will be tested by the US Coast Guard as part of its research into diesel outboard engine technology

The US Coast Guard has entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with Seawork exhibitor and British diesel outboard motor developer, Cox Powertrain.

The CRADA will evaluate and test the advantages,
disadvantages, required technology enhancements, performance, costs and other
issues associated with diesel outboard engine technology.

There a been a big swell of interest in diesel outboards
since NATO introduced its single fuel policy, with the military and naval
forces of member countries keen to phase out petrol-fuelled outboards in favour
of cleaner diesel alternatives.

“As well as posing a more environmentally acceptable
alternative to petrol-fuelled engines, the swap to diesel could result in
20-25% less fuel consumption and subsequently increased vessel range for more
complex and time-consuming missions,” commented Cox Powertrain’s Business
Development Manager, Joel Reid.

As the first high powered diesel outboard to be developed
for marine application from the ground up, the CXO300 impressed the British
Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) so
much that it agreed to provide Cox Powertrain with invaluable technical
assistance in further developing the CXO300 for marine use in addition to £2.5
million of funding. The MoD’s involvement in developing the CXO300 has led to
interest from the US Coast Guard and the US, Dutch, Swedish and Australian

The CRADA between the US Coast Guard and Cox Powertrain will
begin with a test schedule for which Cox will provide and install two of their
diesel outboard engines onto a selected Coast Guard boat platform. The Coast
Guard Research and Development Center in New London, Connecticut will outfit
the platform with the necessary instrumentation to monitor power, speed and
fuel consumption and a Coast Guard field unit will operate the boat for
performance testing over a six-month period to collect information on
reliability, maintenance requirements, and availability data.

LT Carlon F. Brietzke, Project Manager in the US Coast
Guard’s Surface Branch, said, “This is a great opportunity for the Coast Guard
to explore ways to leverage the latest diesel engine technology to further
Coast Guard missions. We look forward to working with Cox Powertrain and the
rest of our CRADA partners as we investigate this emerging technology.”

Cox Powertrain is in the final development stages of its
diesel outboard engine, the CXO300, which the company claims is the first
diesel outboard to be designed specifically for professional marine
applications. Combining the company’s patented Opposed Piston Diesel (OPD)
technology with more conventional leg gear and controls, Cox says the CXO300
has game changing potential for commercial, military and civil applications,
offering a significantly reduced weight and package size, compared to
conventional inboard diesel.

Visit Cox Powertrain  at
Seawork 2017 on stand PY65.

By Jake Frith

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