ZF Marine Introduces Project Disruption Concept

The contra-rotating technology is for conventional inboard shaft-line applications.

ZF Marine
ZF Marine introduced its Project Disruption concept at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat ShowCourtesy ZF Marine

ZF Marine introduced its Project Disruption concept at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. The propulsion technology is contra-rotating for conventional inboard shaft-line applications — a way to change the existing constraints of optimizing propeller diameter with gear ratio.

“For many years there has been little innovation in inboard shaft-line technology,” Keith Stanley, ZF Marine’s pleasure craft product line manager, stated in a press release. “ZF saw the opportunity to bring all the benefits of contra-rotating propellers to this most traditional of propulsion systems.

ZF Marine
"The "Project Disruption" concept allows shaftline boat builders to harness the benefits of contra-rotating propellers - increasing efficiency and acceleration, among other benefits." - ZF MarineCourtesy ZF Marine

The concept is intended to interface with a standard ZF marine transmission. It includes a strut-housed underwater gearbox that transmits power to two contra-rotating propellers.

ZF Marine says the solution increases efficiency and acceleration, and lets boatbuilders consider a wider range of transmission ratios than what is possible today, given propeller-sizing constraints for single-prop shaft lines.

How the system might be used in the future: It is designed to scale to larger propulsion packages as well as hybrid applications.