Grand Canyon River Outfitter's Association
Motor Design Capstone

Project Outline

The Grand Canyon River Outfitters Association (GCROA) is a nonprofit organization comprised of sixteen rafting companies that run rafting trips along the Colorado River. This association, in conjuction with the National Parks Service (NPS), wants to replace their current four stroke outboard motor with a more environmentally friendly propulsion system that emits little to no noise and low emissions. The NAU GCROA Team is an electrical and mechanical engindeering interdisciplinary team that is dedicated to the research and design of this new propulsion system for GCROA. The mechanical team is responsible for producing thermal studies and interfacing the new electrical motor solution with the boat and propeller, while the electrical team is responsible for the wiring of the motor prototype and component selection. Moreover, the electrical team is conducting research into a theoretical regenerative system that is able to replenish power while in remote locations. The goal of this project is to produce a working prototype of an electric DC motor and speed controller that has the same capabilities for speed and durability as the current motor system used by GCROA. Funding for this research and design has been provided by GCROA and NPS.

Updated: April 20, 2009