Dometic today announces the upcoming launch of its Optimus Electric Steering Actuator, the marine industry’s first all-electric steering actuator for outboard engines in the European market. The product is developed exclusively for use with Dometic’s popular Optimus Joystick and Electric Power Steering (EPS) systems.
The product has been introduced to American market at IBEX 2019 and received prestigious IBEX Innovation Award. Dometic will showcase Optimus Electric Steering Actuator at the largest business to business leisure marine industry event, METSTRADE 2019 in November.
The product is also nominated for DAME- Design Award 2019 at the METSTRADE.
This easy-to-install, yet technologically advanced actuator can be paired with many of the most popular engine brands including Yamaha, Mercury, Suzuki and Honda. This makes it an ideal addition for a wide variety of outboard powered fishing and performance boats from top builders.
The Optimus Electric Steering Actuator mounts directly onto the motor in place of the existing hydraulic steering cylinder. With its powerful drive train, integrated proprietary position sensors and embedded electronics, it eliminates the need for separately mounted hydraulic actuators currently used in Optimus Joystick and EPS systems. This means no more Pump Control Module, no more hydraulic pump, no more hydraulic hoses, cylinders and fluid, and no more purging the system.
Peter Kruk, President of EMEA, Dometic says; “I am pleased to see this ground-breaking innovation will soon be available in the European markets. This future proven technology is better for the environment, energy efficient and smart in design. Product leadership through innovation is something we strive for and we see many different applications and business opportunities for growth.”
In terms of on-water performance, ease of installation and season-after-season reliability, the new Optimus Electric Steering Actuator provides substantial advantages to boat builders and boating enthusiasts alike.With current systems, the signal from the Optimus electronic helm goes to the Pump Control Module, which then activates an electro-hydraulic steering system. Although it operates “by wire,” hydraulic fluid is still pumped through hoses into the steering cylinders on the outboards to move the motors left or right.
With the new Optimus Electric Steering Actuator, the electronic helm signal goes directly to the actuator, which instantly moves the outboard.The “brains” of the system, including the ECM, rudder position circuit and CANbus communication are integrated into the actuator itself. Steering power is delivered by a proprietary high-torque, high-efficiency brushless DC electric motor designed and manufactured in house, as well as a patented, compact roller-screw drive system. Both the motor and power train reside within the steering actuator.
IMPROVED VESSEL HANDLING
Boaters using this new steering will instantly notice a marked improvement in vessel handling. Steering response will be immediate, smooth and precise at all speeds. Programmable steering settings, including adjustable speed-sensitive lock-to-lock turns, adjustable speed-sensitive wheel effort and speed sensitive rudder angle limits, continue to be available to ensure safe steering — now without the need for any extra components.
Installation is a snap, with just three CANbus connections plus power. Single, twin, triple and quad outboard installations will be similar, with Optimus Electric Steering Actuators controlling adjacent outboards via tie-bars. In addition, the new Electric Steering Actuator will interface with compatible autopilot systems in the same manner as current Optimus systems. Dometic’sSeaWays Autopilot, Optimus 360 Joystick Control and SeaStation GPS Anchoring functionality are also built in.
EXCEEDS ALL MARINE STANDARDS
The new Optimus Electric Steering Actuator exceeds all marine standards, including NMMA, ABYC, CE and SAE electrical and environmental requirements.The actuators are maintenance free, except for regular greasing of the steering ram via installed zerk fittings. Over 100,000 hours of rigorous testing ensures safe and reliable performance under harsh fresh and saltwater conditions.
The new Electric Steering Actuator will be available to Optimus OEM installers from December 2019.
Note to Editors
Dometic is a global market leader in the mobile living industry. Millions of people around the world use Dometic products in outdoor, residential, and professional applications. Our motivation is to create smart, sustainable, and reliable products with outstanding design for an outdoor and mobile lifestyle in the areas of Food & Beverage, Climate, Power & Control, and Other Applications. Dometic employs approximately 9,000 people worldwide, had net sales of SEK 21.5 billion (USD 2.5 billion) in 2021 and is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden.