Proposed Technology

100 years later

The Mary Gordon Trust is planning to refurbish The Mary Gordon as near as possible to its original specification. Two aspects in which the electric launch will differ will be first of all in terms of compliance with all modern Health and Safety Requirements, and secondly in terms of taking advantage of the latest in electrical technology.

Instead of the heavy dc motors, the launch will be fitted out with a lightweight motor, which has a much more efficient power/weight ratio. The control system will be a modern solid state electronic system offering much finer control throughout the operating range and enable more efficient use of the batteries. Interestingly enough, the construction of the lead acid batteries has not changed substantially since then, albeit the power/weight/life ratios are a bit better. The liquid acid is replaced by a safer gel and they can thus be sealed for life and do not need topping up. An onboard gas-engine generator might be fitted for emergency charging of the batteries if moored remote from a charging point The Mary Gordon will have a traditional spoked wheel, as originally fitted, though there is the possibility nowadays of controlling speed and direction by using a miniature joystick as used on the bridge of modern ships and offshore oil platforms!

Electric propulsion is coming more and more to the fore as a reaction to concern over the environment, especially in motorcars combining petrol engines with electric propulsion. Recommended reading is The Electric Boat News which features news of waterborne applications of which The Mary Gordon was, and will be, typical.

(Information on this page was provided by Mr. Anthony Johns)

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