Seakeeper technology works to minimize boat roll, keeping everyone more comfortable at sea.
By now you may have heard about Seakeeper, a revolutionary feature available on several Sea Ray yacht models that makes for an even more comfortable experience on the open water. In more specific terms, a Seakeeper unit is a Control Moment Gyro, or CMG. Its heavy flywheel spins at high speed in a near vacuum, thus virtually eliminating air friction and allowing weight and power consumption to be minimized.
The flywheel’s angular momentum produces a gyroscopic righting torque, which serves to counteract boat roll. The unit also includes an active control mechanism that optimizes the gyro’s performance over a wide range of sea states. By eliminating boat roll, Seakeeper reduces the fatigue, anxiety and seasickness that can go along with it.
For those interested in Seakeeper’s application, here are answers to a few of the most frequently asked questions:
Does it produce a lot of heat? Or require a ton of power?
The gyro produces between 1-5 kWs of heat during normal operation, most of which is dissipated by its cooling loop. Typically, a Seakeeper unit weighs between 2 and 4 percent of your boat’s total weight, and requires half or less than half the power of the air conditioning system.
What does it sound like when in use?
The steady state noise of each gyro is measured in Seakeeper’s factory test room at distance of 1 meter from the sphere and, depending on model, will measure between 68-75 dB unweighted (less than a standard vacuum cleaner or dishwasher). This sound pressure level will be 2-3 dB lower on the A scale that is typically used to rate marine machinery noise. (The steady state noise is the sound pressure level associated with spinning the flywheel without precession, as if you were sitting at the dock or at anchor with very little or no wave motion.) Since the frequencies emitting the highest sound pressures are low (like other marine machinery), it is recommended that the gyro be installed in a machinery space that is treated with soundproofing.
Does it require extra maintenance?
The gyro is designed to require minimal maintenance, as most of the critical parts operate in a sealed environment. External of the sphere, the closed loop hydraulic circuit and cooling circuit should be periodically inspected and serviced per the operating manual provided with the unit.
Where does it go?
Unlike traditional fin stabilizers, the Seakeeper gyro is installed safely inside the hull where it can’t be damaged by hazards at sea. This placement means no added drag, no effect on your top speed, and minimal maintenance.
Check out a video of the technology in action at seakeeper.com.