• -

Northern Lights and HUG Engineering Partner to Provide IMO III Compliant Diesel Exhaust Solutions


SEATTLE, WASHINGTON (USA) – Leading manufacturer of marine generator sets Northern Lights, Inc. (NLI) is pleased to announce a newly formed partnership with HUG Engineering of Switzerland to provide complete, IMO III certified clean air power generation solutions.


HUG Engineering is a leading manufacturer of exhaust after-treatment equipment with over 30 years of experience in emission control technologies. This new partnership will allow customers to purchase Northern Lights’ line of marine generator sets and HUG’s selective catalytic NOx reduction (SCR) systems or particle filter (DPF) systems as one completely integrated solution. This engineered solution is fully IMO III Certified and meets the stringent performance and packaging requirements of the maritime industry. Ideal for the superyacht market, the SCR / DPF is available for Northern Lights units above 115kWe installed on vessels over 500 gross register tonnage.


“Northern Lights is well known for producing the world’s highest quality marine generator sets. Likewise, HUG Engineering is well known for producing the highest quality after-treatment systems,” says Northern Lights Vice President and General Manager Brian Vesely, “Both companies are wide-scope, market-driven manufacturers, dedicated to engineering solutions for the marine industry. This collaboration marks a significant milestone in the ability for NLI and HUG to offer off-the-shelf solutions for these new IMO III requirements, which gives customers an advantage when building or refitting a vessel under these new standards”


Representatives from Northern Lights and HUG Engineering will be on hand at the Monaco International Yacht Show, at stands QAA29 and QH13, respectively to discuss this exciting partnership.


The Northern Lights family of marine generator sets include products from 5-545kW at 60Hz (4.5 to 475 kW at 50 Hz) with a comprehensive line up of marine-ready accessories, including sound attenuated sound enclosures and vibration-dampening compound mounts. For more information about Northern Lights products, visit www.northern-lights.com.




About Northern Lights, Inc.

Northern Lights is the leading manufacturers of marine power generation systems. The company’s products are distributed through a global sales and service network of over 350 dealers in more than 40 countries.

Northern Lights, Inc. – 4420 NW 14th Avenue – Seattle, Washington 98107 USA


About Hug Engineering AG:

Hug Engineering AG is the specialist for exhaust gas purification for diesel and gas engines in stationary and mobile applications.

The development, design and production of all key components, such as ceramic substrates, catalytic coatings, housing as well as control system in our own factories are setting new benchmarks and world standards in the area of exhaust gas after-treatment.

Hug Engineering AG – Im Geren 14, 8352 Elsau, Switzerland www.hug-engineering.com

  • -

Northern Lights Installed Aboard Jimmy Buffett’s Surfari 44

Northern Lights is proud to be the generator set of choice for the brand new Surfari 44, built for musician Jimmy Buffett.

Currently under construction, Surfari 44 is being built by Pacific Seacraft, from a design by Friendship Yacht Company. The performance motor sailer is powered by a 9kW Northern Lights M773LW3 generator set. To enhance on-board comfort, the set was installed with a Northern Lights sound enclosure and compound mounts, making noise vibration virtually non-existent.


Surfari 44 was designed with Buffett’s lifestyle in mind – featuring a compact length and adapted short-handed handling – perfect for simplifying life onboard. “This is a high-performance auxiliary powered sailing yacht,” said Naval Architect Ted Fontaine, on his design of Surfari 44. “It goes places. And once it is where it needs to be, it becomes a luxury indoor/outdoor living platform that allows its user to enjoy the destination as much as the journey.”

Surfari 44 is a single level infused composite sail yacht, with an LOA of 48 feet (15 meters). It features a hydraulically operated drop down transom, twin composite blade runners and a teak cockpit sole. The sail sits on a carbon mast and boom.

Designed to be highly responsive and fast under power, Surfari 44’s lifting keel allows access to shallow water. The boat has excellent sun protection, great access to the water and a cockpit designed for comfortable dock side living.

  • -

Making The Right Choice for Onboard Comfort

It’s a story as old as manned sea-craft itself – how do you provide climate control that is suitable for the entire crew? Crew comfort is a key consideration for retention and regulation. Your crew works hard, but disputes about the amount of air conditioning or heating, and when and where to turn it on, have been inevitable.

The Marine Climate Control Experts at Technicold recommend individual compartment controls.  This will maximizes crew comfort while minimizing management headaches.

A world-class line of chilled water and direct-expansion air handlers will be designed to fit easily in almost any berth or compartment. When specking climate control, look for features including vertical assembly and rotatable insulated blowers.

There are other ways to enhance onboard comfort and safety. Electric heat strips and immersion heaters provide cold environment solutions. Install a dash heater in the pilot house to defrost the window, enhancing safety. Anti-bacterial UV lamps eliminate odors and improve air quality.

And if that still isn’t enough to keep the peace on board, look for locking control panels – just set it and forget it.

contoller locked

The experts at Technicold will help layout a complete climate control system through superior engineering and marine class components. For maximum onboard comfort the answer is simple: Technicold marine air conditioning.

  • -

Technicold Condensing Coils – How a Small Detail Makes a Huge Impact

In the world of vessel design, climate control is an important factor. But one of the most critical factors in the quality of the air conditioning system is one that is easy to overlook – the condenser coil.

Many manufacturers use copper coils that are subject to failure from sitting coolant and corrosion. The Marine Climate Experts at Technicold have a better way.

condensor coil

Technicold uses only large, single pass fluted coaxial cupronickel counter-flow condensing coils.   That is a lot of features packed into a small component, so let’s break it down:

  • Large coil size ensures efficient coolant delivery.
  • The fluted design prevents sitting coolant and water that can lead to corrosion.
  • Cupornickel is a robust alloy that is known for its resistance to oxidation.
  • The counter flow condenser allows low sea water velocity for even condensing.

This level of attention is only one of many examples of the thoughtful engineering that goes into every Technicold product. Made specifically for the harsh marine environment, Technicold chilled water air conditioning systems feature 316L grade stainless steel hardware and low-condensation design to ensure the best long-term value in the marine industry.

The experts at Technicold will help layout a complete climate control system through superior engineering and marine class components. For maximum onboard comfort the answer is simple: Technicold marine air conditioning.

  • -

  • -

Better Boating: How to Safely Run Ocean Inlets

Jim Hendricks

From the shifting Outer Banks of North Carolina to the tempestuous coast of the Pacific Northwest, boating anglers regularly face potentially hazardous inlets. Entrances such as those at Florida’s Boynton and St. Lucie inlets, Oregon’s Columbia River bar, California’s Golden Gate, and North Carolina’s Oregon Inlet host some of the world’s most challenging sea conditions.

A combination of ­factors can turn inlets nasty in a hurry, says Bill Cordes, director of sales and marketing for Opa Locka, Florida-based Invincible Boats. Cordes has run inlets all of his adult life, and witnessed breakers so tall you couldn’t see over the top.

“A powerful outgoing tide streaming through a narrow channel and a strong onshore wind tend to pile up steep seas,” Cordes explains. “Combine these two factors with shoaling, and you have big, breaking waves at the inlet, resulting in very ­dangerous conditions.”

Cordes and others offer the following tips for staying safe when running an inlet, with special advice for tackling entrances that are new to you.

**1. Tap Local Knowledge **

If you don’t know the inlet, ask local captains in advance for advice, says Cordes. “Reaching out to a local charter captain or commercial fisherman is a good idea,” he explains. “It’s entirely OK to ask if you can follow them out, as they know the best line through the entrance, which can change often from shifting sandbars.” You might even hire a guide with a strong knowledge of the inlet to show you the way, Cordes suggests. In either case, use your chart plotter to record the track taken through the inlet so you can retrace the path a day or two later. Keep in mind, however, that the safest course through an inlet can change. Don’t assume that the track you use today will still be safe a month from now.

**2. Know the Conditions **

Stay posted on the latest weather conditions and tides, not only for your departure time, but also for your return, as knowing when to cross is just as important as knowing where to cross. “A strong outgoing tide is always cause for concern,” says Chad Normoyle, a Shimano/G.Loomis pro staffer who often crosses the infamous Columbia River bar to fish for albacore off Oregon and Washington. “You might get out OK, but if you time the return poorly, your boat’s safety might be in jeopardy.”

**3. Don’t Be in a Hurry **

Whether heading out or in, take some time to study the inlet before making your run, especially if you are unfamiliar with the bar, says Todd Leggett, product engineering prototype supervisor for Grady-White Boats in Greenville, North Carolina. He suggests studying the cycles of waves at the bar; there’s a rhythm to them. “You want to cross when the waves are smaller,” he advises. You can also check out the inlet the day before, perhaps making a trial run in and out, laying down a track on your chart plotter to record the best line over the bar.

4. Run the Right Boat

Make sure your boat has sufficient size, buoyancy and seakeeping ability, Cordes advises. “The last thing you want is a boat that doesn’t track well in a following sea, or tends to stuff the bow into a head sea, or is overwhelmed by the waves,” he says. The boat should also ride relatively level at low speeds. “If the boat has a lot of bow rise, it’s difficult to see the waves, buoys, jetties and other objects in front of you, impairing your ability to navigate the inlet safely,” Cordes says. “Know the capabilities and limitations of your boat.”

5. Run the Boat Right

Look for the area of the bar or inlet that has the smallest waves. This is usually the area with the deepest water. When returning in a big following sea, keep the boat straight and on the backside of a wave, experts suggest. Match the wave’s speed, trying to stay midway between the crest behind you and the one ahead. Avoid overtaking the wave and surfing down its face, as this can lead to catastrophic pitchpoling (flipping stern over bow) or broaching (capsizing as the boat turns sideways toward a breaking wave). By the same token, apply enough power to keep ahead of the wave astern and prevent it from overtaking you. Adjust your throttles to stay in the trough until you have passed the danger zone.

6. Have Plenty of Power

Safely running a raging inlet requires that you have immediate reserve power to maneuver out of harm’s way. “You might not always need the extra power, but having extra horsepower relative to your boat size can help keep you safe,” says Cordes. For example, when trying to stay ahead of a breaking wave, a punch of the throttle keeps you in position. Few things are more dreadful than having an underpowered boat in a raging inlet, whether trying to climb up the face of a wave or hoping to outrun it.

7. Don’t Go at Night

Running an inlet proves exponentially more difficult and dangerous when you can’t see. “A lot of guys like to head offshore before daylight to fish for tuna, and that means crossing the bar in the dark,” says Normoyle. “Every year there are accidents as a result.” So Normoyle’s advice is to wait until daylight to head out, and to return early enough to cross back over before sundown. The same advice applies when there’s heavy fog or torrential rain.

8. Wait a Few Hours

Sometimes, waiting just a few hours for a slack tide can make the difference between a calm crossing and a calamitous one. “Even though the wind might be blowing, the lack of an outgoing tide can render the inlet more manageable,” Cordes points out. So if the inlet is too rough, consider waiting out the tides, whether you’re heading out in the morning or coming back in the afternoon. Another option is to chart a course or trailer your boat to another, more user-friendly inlet.

9. Wear Life Jackets

No matter what the conditions, if they’re not already doing so, instruct your crew to don life jackets when running an inlet. “It’s always a good idea to ask them to stay seated with their life jackets on,” says Cordes. Get all crew members out of the cabin or other enclosure, as the buoyancy of their life jackets might prevent escape should the boat capsize. If, as the helmsman, you must remain in an enclosed space, such as a pilothouse, wear a manually inflatable life jacket.

10. Wear PLBs

On days when things appear dicey, make sure crew are wearing PLBs (personal locator beacons) on their life jackets. Also be ready to deploy the EPIRB (emergency position-indicating radio beacon) in an emergency to assist first responders in rescue efforts.

11. Notify Authorities

Radio the Coast Guard or harbor patrol ahead of time if you are experiencing any kind of engine problems or other issues that might impair your boat’s ability to safely return through the inlet. They might choose to stand by inside the inlet to quickly lend ­assistance in the event of an emergency.

12. Don’t Go

Some days, when the inlet is raging, you need to let prudence prevail. “Don’t be afraid to err on the side of caution and cancel a trip,” says Cordes. “Your crew might be disappointed, but as the captain, it’s your job to make sure everyone stays safe to fish another day.”

  • -

Electric and Diesel – A Match Made in Heaven for the Commercial Operator

Courtesy of Power and Motoryacht

By George L. Petrie

Rising fuel costs are always a concern.  As a result, achieving improvements in fuel economy has become a high priority throughout the marine industry, as it has in many other segments of business. Engine manufacturers have risen to the challenge, delivering sophisticated new power plants that not only burn less fuel but also produce fewer emissions. However, the fact remains that diesel engines will generally run most efficiently when they’re operating near their full rated capacity.


And that poses a problem for vessels in commercial service. For example, tugboats have big engines to develop lots of towing power but may spend much of their time operating at well below their maximum towing capacity. Or consider that crew and supply boats in the offshore industry must run at high speed to and from oil rigs that may be 100 miles or more from shore, where they then spend several hours idling alongside the rig while supplies and personnel are transferred. And last but not least, there are cruise ships, floating cities with power requirements that vary substantially, depending on whether the ship is in port or underway.

One of the ways that cruise-ship owners, tug-boat operators, and others in the commercial sector have confronted the problem posed by widely varying power requirements is to use diesel-electric propulsion systems. Rather than having a diesel engine drive the propellers directly, a diesel-electric system typically uses multiple diesel-powered gensets to produce electricity, which then powers an electric motor that turns a propeller shaft.

Using the diesel engine to make electricity, then using that electricity to drive an electric motor seems like a woefully inefficient process. And if power demand is constant, a diesel-electric drive can be slightly (about five percent) less efficient. But for circumstances where power demand is widely variable, the versatility of the diesel-electric system can yield big dividends, because gensets can be brought on line or shut down as power demand changes.

Other than efficiency, one of the big advantages of a diesel-electric drive system is that big propulsion engines need not be located in line with the prop shaft; electric motors of the same kilowatt capacity are generally much smaller. This allows the yacht designer more latitude in deciding where to locate the gensets. And, in fact, the propulsion motors do not even have to be located inside the hull. One notable implementation of diesel-electric propulsion is the Azipod, developed by the German firm ABB. The Azipod system utilizes an electric motor mounted externally in a pod beneath the hull. The motor drives a fixed-pitch propeller mounted at one end of the pod, and the entire pod is free to turn 360 degrees. By locating the motors outside of the hull, problems like alignment, noise, and vibration that are associated with a conventional shaft, strut, and bearing drive train are eliminated. Moreover, because the pods can turn, they offer extraordinary maneuverability compared to a normal shaft and rudder system on a boat.

As long as forward thinking shipyards remain open to out of the box power systems, creative solutions can be found.  Northern Lights manufactures a line of fully customizable generator sets, up to 545kW – 60 Hz (475 kW – 50 Hz), ready to respond to the challenge.

Formerly a professor of naval architecture at the University of New Orleans, George Petrie is a professor of naval architecture at the Webb Institute and continues to provide consulting services to small craft designers, ship operators, and other members of the marine industry.

  • -

Northern Lights congratulates Hunt Associates on 50 Years

New Bedford, MA – C. Raymond Hunt Associates, a boat design firm that continues to expand on the legacy of its founder, C. Raymond Hunt, to produce innovative boats with rugged seaworthiness, is now celebrating its 50th year.


“Ray Hunt was a genius, able to intuitively know how boats work and with the courage to experiment. We have taken Ray’s ideas and applied them, honing our expertise and knowledge from the days of the early deep-v hulls. Now we have an 11-meter RIB on virtually every large ship in the U.S. Navy, designed the vast majority of American pilot boats, and helped boat builders develop new products in new markets across the marine industry,” said C. Raymond Hunt Associates President, Winn Willard.


Ray Hunt’s innovative approach to design resulted in several transformative designs in the 1950’s and 1960’s. The Boston Whaler 13 and the Bertram 31 changed the paradigm of the fast powerboat. The Concordia Yawl and the 5.5-meter sailboats were trophy winners especially with Ray at the helm.


In 1966, and in his late 60’s, Ray partnered with John Deknatel to form C. Raymond Hunt Associates to expand the application and refinement of the Hunt deep-v hull to a wide range of boats. Under Deknatel’s leadership, the firm expanded its presence in the production boat and custom yacht markets.


Designs have been created for major boat manufacturers including: Bertram, Grady-White, Boston Whaler, Robalo, Cruisers, Chris-Craft, 4 Winns, Southport, Grand Banks, SeaArk, Regal, and Wellcraft. Significant was the Eastbay 38, the first of the fast traditional cruisers that spawned an entirely new market; the first Robalo in 1970, a center console flats boat with offshore capability. Hunt has designed all Grady-White hulls for more than 25 years.


Custom Hunt designed yachts have been built around the world at such yards as Burger, Palmer Johnson, Hinckley, Lyman-Morse, Nautor, and Royal Huisman.


The firm demonstrated its flexibility and expertise by keeping a foot in the sailboat market throughout the sailing boom of the 1970’s and 1980’s with designs for Cal, O’Day, Ranger, and Paceship. “I think we were unique among designers at the time doing power and sail design simultaneously,” said Deknatel.


Starting in the late 1970’s Willard led the firm’s entry into the commercial and military markets. Designs have been done for the Navy, Coast Guard, police and fire departments worldwide. “The Hunt designed and Gladding-Hearn built pilot boats have proven to be the choice of the majority of U.S. pilots for their unmatched capability in rough seas. Pilotage is perhaps the highest use of the Hunt deep-v, given the demands of all-weather operation,” said Willard, President of the firm since Deknatel’s retirement last year. “That same experience has been applied across the breadth of Hunt designs.”


In 1998, Deknatel and Willard began Hunt Yachts Inc. to produce its own line of classic New England style cruisers. Hunt Yachts was sold to Hinckley in 2013.


Located in the New Bedford Historic District since 2006 after 40 years in Boston, C. Raymond Hunt Associates employs a staff of 10 including naval architects, engineers, designers and administrative. Peter Boyce is the firm’s Principal Designer and Craig Obara is Chief Naval Architect.

Press Release (PDF)
C. Raymond Hunt Associates Staff Photo (TIF)
John Deknatel and Winn Willard Photo (TIF)
Peter Boyce and Craig Obara Photo (TIF


  • -

Don’t Be Left Out in The Cold – Electric Heat Solutions from Technicold

When it comes to on-board heating solutions you have a choice. Technicold – producers of the state of the art in marine climate control systems – recommends a safe, reliable electric heat solution. See below to learn more about the advantages electric heat enjoys over reverse cycle.



With a chilled water cooling system, both electric and reverse cycle systems are available to provide heat to your boat. However, there are many factors that go into choosing the right solution, including one that may not be obvious when considering the comfort of your interior – your exterior.

Electric heat is produced through your boat’s internal power source. Reverse cycle, however, is powered by a heat pump which transfers heat from one source to another. In the case of at an-sea environment, that external source is the ambient water.

Reverse heat has a limited range of operating conditions. Its ideal condition is in water that is 60o Fahrenheit. You may never encounter a problem with reverse heat if you can guarantee a water temperature of 60o – say, in the world’s largest bath tub!

Real world conditions, of course, are not that accommodating. Problems can manifest with reverse heat systems that are exposed to temperatures above 60o, or below 40o. Because there is not enough heat available in water temperatures below 40o, the reverse cycle system can short cycle on the low pressure switch. This leads to coil freezing and liquid slugging in the compressor. In extreme cold, the raw water condenser coil can even freeze and rupture. In other words, during the times when you need interior heating the most, reverse cycle heating is most vulnerable to failure.

Electric heat, on the other hand, is powered by the boat’s main AC source, and is therefore not subject to the variances of external temperature. The electric system design prevents the wear and tear on the compressors and raw water pump associated with the on and off cycling of a reverse heat system. Electric heat is also a much quieter option – there is no compressor or reversing valve noise as is present in a reverse heat system.


Electric heat on chilled water systems is available through two different conveyances: immersion heat or heat strips. For immersion heat, a heat core is added to the condenser, which heats the entire loop. This is a good option for smaller boats, or scenarios where the entire boat must be kept at a consistent temperature. Heat and cooling is controlled through a single central control panel.


Heat strips provide another heating option. Each air handler on a chilled water system can be equipped with its own heat strip, which can then be individually controlled by separate control panels. Each space on a boat can be temperature controlled as required. Heat strips are a good option for larger yachts and charter vessels. Grandma can turn up the heat in her berth, while the kids bouncing on the beds in their cabins remain cool.

2-stage immersion heater with flow switch2 b&w


Another scenario where electric heat is preferable is when the boat is out of the water. During refit or repair work – or even in winter storage – it is not possible to heat a dry boat with reverse heat. There is no seawater for the pumps to draw from. Because electric heat is provided by the boat’s AC power, it can be turned on at any time the generators are operating. Since most repair work is done in off-peak (winter) months, the work crew, engineers and anyone else on board will appreciate a heating option.

Your choice of climate control is important. Selecting a heating solution that is independent, versatile and efficient will provide long-term value and enhance your boating experience. Contact your nearest Technicold representative or visit our web site to learn more about the state of the art in marine heat, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration.


  • -

Technicold Presents: The Commercial Operator’s Monthly HVAC Checklist

Downtime is never an option in the commercial marine industry.  But working with poorly functioning air conditioning in the summer months is unpleasant at best and a legitimate safety hazard at worst.  The marine HVAC experts at Technicold have the tips you need to make sure that your AC unit is ready for long summer nights.  Here are a few items that should be checked every month:   

“Read More”