Marine Autopilot

The task – analyse and improve an NPI that had critical safety failure modes related to gear, clutch, electric motor.

Comprehensive DFMEA study, Six Sigma analysis of all manufactured parts, tolerance analysis of the critical gear system and belt mechanisms. Multiple extended life tests in the lab to identify root causes of failure.


Redesign of the housings and tooling trials / first off component approval in Asian supplier factories.

Updated assembly with redesigned wormgear drive, new clutch spring profile, uprated motor, carbon tipped belts, housing modified from PC/ABS to 20% glass filled PC, additional stiffeners throughout, new gaskets and seal profiles.

Rigorous life-testing both in the chamber and onboard <10m powerboats in the Solent and the US. Waterproof testing to IPx6 marine rating.

The new version SPX-5R was launched and is in use around the world.