I could see this blowing up in their face via a lot of boat fires.
Even if they said people would have to have them on boats, then what would they do to enforce it?? cause then what they would go look in every boat they see, ya at a destin poker run that would be impossible
I could see this blowing up in their face via a lot of boat fires.
I believe Indmar already has a working converter for their inboard ski/wakeboard boat motors. New technology allows the converter to work at greatly reduced temperatures compared to what an automotive converter has to operate at. There was an article on this in one of the boating mags last year. I beleive the converter was built into a new header type manifold.
Last edited by Knot 4 Me; 01-16-2008 at 10:19 AM. Reason: Meant to say Indmar, not Inmar
Quite a lot of misformation and misunderstanding here. While a total boating and OSO Noob, I have spent my whole working life developing high performance gasoline engines to legislated emissions standards so I thought I'd drop some facts in here:
1) This is to be introduced for new builds from 2009 so no-one is going to be going around enforcing this on older boats. So the fact that your older carburetted boat runs 12.5:1 is not important
2) The regs are being developed with the EPA/CARB AND the USCG so the safety of your engine room will be being built into solutions and the USCG standards for engine room safety will have to be met.
3) Standard manifolds on most marinised engines are pretty awful (centre rise log manifold with short or non-existent tuned runners). A quick look at the Indmar website (and from a purely technical POV they seem to be the closest mariniser to the Automotive state of the art) shows that they have developed a water cooled catalyst sat on a nice 4-1 header so that the losses are more than offset when compared to your standard centre rise manifold.
4) How can you water cool a cat I hear you yell? Surely they get hot and NEED to be hot to work? Well, 2 things: cats are not mounted directly into a steel shell as otherwise they'd crack. They are normally mounted in a steel gauze so heat transfer can be reduced and mechanical vibration transmission to the substrate is stopped. Secondly remember that an automotive catalyst doesn't need to be designed to be particularly cool as there is a plentiful supply of cooling air. So there's not a lot of point of engineering a cool cat since it's not really required. Since the grass burning incidents years ago, most are now twin skinned as well as gauze isolation mounted to reduce heat transfer a bit.
For a boat however, we do need to keep the OUTER of the catalyst cool, so a solution can then be developed to meet that requirement. I don't think anyone would be stupid enough to put an automotive catalyst straight into a gasoline marine engine bay. And certainly not where the USCG are involved.
So now you can if we extend the shield idea, we can see that by extending the second outer skin (more of a shield in automotive applications) to perfectly encircle the inner clamshell that holds the cat in it's gauze, we can then fill that outer with water and have a layer of air and then gauze between the water and the cat. That way we have the outer shell of the cat which is cool for your engine room and which is hot enough to convert. Typically for modern coatings this is around 300DegC.
5) These regs aren't that stringent (at least compared with Federal Auto regs) so the cat doesn't have to be very fine celled (cats are measured in the number of cells per sq in and typical LEV2 cats are now around the 600cpsi mark). A race cat which would fail emissions in a road car but helps clean up motor sport, can be bought as low as 50-100cpsi which greatly improves the back pressure. Somewhere around here would be more than sufficient for a boat catalyst application.
That said, the last application I was involved in was the MY07 Bentley Arnage which was a 500bhp 6.75 V8 and which despite meeting LEV2 and having 600cpsi cats, still only had 50kPa back pressure at full load. This is a lot less than most high volume production cars, so it can be done.
5) Now we have to remember that keeping a cat lit off (that is hot enough to convert) is difficult in a car with all that stopping and starting. This doesn't happen in a boat. It's like driving a car up a steep hill. ALL DAY. So you have plenty enough heat to worry about, in fact you need to be keeping it cooled! Hence water cooling is an option here. It also means that the cat doesn't need to be so close to the head to keep it hot during stop/start driving, that it compromises the exhaust design, hence INDMAR's 4-1 tuned header before the cat will still keep the cat more than hot enough to meet emissions.
6) Lastly the regs also introduce similar evaporative emissions controls to cars. Surely a bad thing? Well not really, actually it's a good thing: It means that the fuel system is sealed and the vapours are absorbed by a carbon can. This is then fed into the engine when it is running. This prevents fumes in the bilge, prevents the need to run blowers when refuelling and a whole host of fuel vapour related problems. Of course you'd still need blowers for starting just in case a fuel pipe was leaking but since the regs also introduce marine OBD, the ECU would be able to detect very small leaks and it would then be able to sound a warning. That's a major safety advantage surely?
7) Lastly, and another plus point, once lit off, the cats would remove the CO in teh exhaust gases, hence no worries about CO accumulating in the bilges, cabin or following you at low speeds by backdrafting.
Quite a lot of benefits in fact. Tuning and HiPo engines will change but anyone can see that the introduction of mandated EFI and catalysts has not prevented manufacturers and tuners introducing ever more powerful engines in the car world, so I can't believe that things will stop developing in the boat world either.
You won't be lobbing carbs on a 2009 boat with a blower (and stay legal) but then again, I still can't believe that anyone spending the sums that get spent on tuned engines, would fit carbs over EFI on a highly tuned modern gasoline engine anyway, supercharged or otherwise. The idea that all tuning and HiPo engines will stop is simply not borne out by what has happened in the car world. There are supercharger kits and lots else that still pass smog tests.
Hope that informs a bit!
Just my 5c (or tuppence as we say in the UK)
Phew got carried away there, sorry for the length!
Well, very sorry to hear all about that. The good news is, they will be easy to simply knock out and reinstall the shell, thanks. And BTW I'll be sticking with carbs. Most car people don't get the whole salt water-electronics thing anyways. My only advice, keep extra fire extinguishers handy.
Electronics can be sealed. Modern boating EFI systems are testament to that.
If you knock the cats out then you will set a fault code and fail a smog test. The regs from the EPA, (all 297 pages of them) do mandate in use testing......
Malibu ski boats do this already.
But it will sure be interesting with the perforance side
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Don't get to excited here on this catalytic converter issue!
First these standards have supposedly been amended to a start date now for new builds of 2010. Seems some of the biggest including, Mercury, GM Powertrain, Volvo and others have had one heck of a time getting these systems to work, especially in salt water and they have been supposedly a repreive to allow more time to develop systems which work reliably in all enviroments and will be long term reliable so as to allow the three year warranty on the motors that the EPA is requiring. I don't think the Indmar systems are holding up in Salt!!
A good engine with proper emissions controls, a good closed loop O2 controlled program and proper air fuel ratios can easily produce over 500HP and give better fuel ecomomy than todays motors.
The time is needed to develop some newer technologies and product that can stand up to the demand of marine power requirements.
This well be the future!, the question is how many boaters can afford the added costs?? and can the manufacturers make a profit with the warranty periods being required??
Good questions, only time and money will tell.
Very nice information from Ruaraidh on the operation and possibilities for cats in marine engines, lets hope he's right on the ease of integration, apparently a few of the Big Boys are not finding that easy!
We are already working on emissions compliance R&D on our new LSM550 and we think with enough money and time we can get where the industry lands in 2009.
Anybody got any extra money!! HA!
Ray @ Raylar
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