Caterpillar Launches Marine Diesel Electric Propulsion Engines

Caterpillar has unveiled its latest development in the 3500 engine series with the launch of the Cat 3512C and 3516C Diesel Electric Propulsion (DEP) engines, which meet EPA Tier 2 and IMO Tier I regulations.

Manufactured at the Lafayette Engine Center in Lafayette, Indiana, U.S.A., the constant-speed DEP engines incorporate EUI fuel system capabilities, along with ADEM A3 Electronic Control Units (ECU). The Vee-12, 4-stroke 3512C engines are available at 1360 ekW, 1550 ekW, and 1700 ekW, and the Vee-16, 4-stroke 3516C engines are available at both 2000 ekW and 2250 ekW. All engine ratings are certified to the E2 emissions cycle, Cat said.

Advantages of using DEP engines include additional safety of operators, lower noise and vibration levels, and driving efficiencies by leveraging electronic technology and the overall system design, Cat said. Caterpillar also added that the EUI fuel system capabilities and ADEM ECU deliver more available power while achieving fuel efficiency. In terms of maintenance, Caterpillar said the time between overhaul is increased as DEP engines are not always running at full load and there is no physical contact with the propeller and engine.

DEP engines can also help in reducing the environmental footprint of the vessel, Caterpillar said, as electronic propulsion reduces the CO2 emissions as a result of efficiency gains from better power and load management. In addition, Cat noted that the emission levels achieved with DEP engines enable shipping companies to obtain special environmental certification with the Marine Classification Societies.

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