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Powertrain Controls Limited

Producer of the 6600M: A Targeted  Engine and Power Distribution Controller

The 6600M integrates all of the Engine Control and Power Distribution functionality required for the Duramax 6600 Marine Engine. An advanced marine targeted Engine Control Unit (ECU), Cold Start/Glow Plug Controller and Power Distribution Module (PDM) have been combined into one compact solid-state module. The 6600M is designed to enhance the compact, ultra-reliable, feature-rich, ‘plug and play’ philosophy behind the Duramax 6600 engine.

Engine Control Unit (ECU): About

General Features


  • Typically, existing marine engines have a substantial ‘catch all’ cabinet mounted on the side of the engine. This houses the various control modules together with the relay and fuse housings. By comparison, the compact solid-state 6600M module sits neatly at the front of the engine and is tightly coupled within the engines profile.

  • The enclosure and connectors are IP6K9k ingress compliant.

EMC and Load Dump Compliance

  • The 6600M is designed to be SAE J-1455(Load dump) and SAE J-1113 2, 4, 11 and 42 compliant (Electromagnetic Compatibility)

Communication Interfaces

NMEA (2000)


  • Firmware protocol stacks are available to provide a firmware interface to external telematic devices via CAN or RS232 physical interfaces. The telematic devices include cellular, satellite and GPS.

  • A cellular link enables a smartphone user to connect to the 6600M ECU remotely provided the vessel is within the cellular network range. A satellite link will provide a connection to any location.

  • The telematic interfaces have numerous potential applications including; remote or local service and diagnostics, GPS tracking, vessel security (alert and unlock), vessel status, multiple throttle sync (fuel, battery, fridge etc).

CAN 2.0B, SAE J1939, OBD-II, NMEA2000

  • A CAN 2.0B / SAEJ1939 physical interface is supported by protocol stacks to provide NMEA2000 and OBDII compliant interfaces.

  • Standard OBDII PID’s (Parameter Identification) codes are supported together with an enhanced set of Duramax 6600 Marine specific PID’s.

RS232 Interface

  • An RS232 physical interface is provided to connect with a PC.

  • Mapping and configuration is performed over the RS232 link, through a powerful command interface or a GUI that encapsulates the command interface.

Manual Diagnostic Interface

  • A simple LED/push-button interface will provide essential diagnostics where a scan tool is not available.

Microcontrollers and Firmware

  • The 6600M utilizes several advanced 32bit powertrain control targeted cores together with 32bit Digital Signal Processing cores.

Marine Targeted Failure Management

  • The 6600M functions as a control and distribution ‘hub’ for both the Duramax 6600 Marine Engine electrical system and the vessel auxiliary electrics such as helm power. As such, it is well positioned to monitor and respond to adverse events that may occur within the module or external to the module.

  •  Adverse events can be assigned a level of severity. Each level of severity can be assigned to an action. For example, a minor event might be logged, to be read and acknowledged during the next service. An intermediate event could be brought to the operator’s attention immediately via a lamp or alarm. The operator may elect to shut-down the engine or reduce power at their discretion to reduce system damage. If the vessel is encountering extreme conditions, the operator might elect to maintain full power regardless of any system damage incurred. A high priority event such as a hard over-current, is hard-wired to shut down power to the affected system.

Engine Control Unit (ECU): Headliner

Engine Control (ECU) Features

Dual helm/dual engine control

  • In a dual Duramax 6600 Marine installation, each engine is assigned a 6600M module. One module can be configured as a master and the other, a slave. The modules communicate over the CAN interface with the master module acting as the gateway to the helm control and instrumentation.

  • In a dual helm installation, a safety protocol can be configured to implement the safeguards that have been traditionally enforced using mechanical linkages.

Configurable Analogue Instrument Output / Sensor Emulation

  • In addition to supporting OBDII/NMEA2000 instruments, the 6600M provides outputs for two analogue instruments and an analogue Tachometer.

  • Virtually any analogue instrument can be connected directly to the 6600M instead of the instrument supplied sensor. The 6600M is then configured to emulate the sensor.

Mapping and Control

  • Mapping and configuration is performed through a powerful command interface or a GUI that encapsulates the command interface.

  • Control strategies include Speed Demand or Torque Demand using Speed / Density or Mass Air Flow.

Cold Start System – Glow Plug and Fuel Heater Control

  • The Duramax 6.6 Automotive Engine utilizes a Beru ISS system to control the Glow Plugs and Fuel Heater.

  • The 6600M provides PWM control over the low voltage Glow Plugs and Fuel Heater.

Piezo or Solenoid Injector Control

  • Duramax engines employ both technologies. For flexibility, the 6600M can be hard-configured to drive either type of injector.

EPA Tier II Compliance

Cathodic Protection and Salt Water Flow

Inputs and Outputs

  • Nineteen analogue inputs

  • Five slow digital inputs

  • Five fast digital inputs

  • Five load dump protected switched battery voltage inputs

  • Three type k thermocouple inputs

  • All inputs are battery and reverse battery tolerant

  • All battery Voltage and switched battery inputs are load dump protected


  • Three digital low side drivers

  • Three digital high side drivers

  • Four proportional solenoid drivers

  • Eight injector drivers can be PCB configured for Piezo or Solenoid injectors

  • Eight low Voltage PWM glow plug drivers

Engine Control Unit (ECU): Headliner

Solid-State Power Distribution Features

Solid-state power distribution has been widely used in commercial aviation for some time. Power Distribution Modules (PDM’s) are gaining traction within the automotive industry. The advantages are many when compared with relay/fuse technology:

  • Reduced volume and weight.

  • Circuits can be individually configured for trip threshhold and trip speed.

  • Long life, high reliabilty, no maintenance.

  • Reduced wiring clutter due to fewer wiring circuits and a reduction in wire guage required for any given current.

  • Improved ingress protection.

  • Fail-safe redundant system technology.

  • Ability to alert a technician to impending wiring or connector problems i.e high resistance circuits.

  • An over-current event can be intelligently evaluated as to the scope of shut-down that is required. This is in comparison with a fuse failure which may require immediate replacement to resume operation.

Solid State Relays

  • The 6600M provides five 30A high-side Solid State Relay (SSR) outputs.

  • Each SSR can be assigned an over-current threshold and over-current trip profile. The action required in response to an over-current event is also configurable.

  • Four SSR’s are assigned to the Engine Control Functions; Starter Motor, Fuel Pump, Fuel Heater and Sump pump-out.

  • The remaining SSR’s is available for vessel auxiliary power. This SSR can be assigned to a digital input and switching logic can be configured to enable the SSR to be operated with buttons/switches and subject to a logic scheme.

Fail Safe Concept

  • The Power Distribution System employs a primary system and a redundant secondary system. The redundant system exists entirely independently of any other 6600M systems.

Intelligent Battery Bank and Battery Load Management

The 6600M has been developed to provide sensing and management of a high energy battery bank.

  • Intelligent load control

  • Smart power management in high current demand cold start situations.

  • The 6600M is well placed to monitor the health of a marine battery bank.

  • Configurable Alternator control using an enable output and PWM current measurement

Engine Control Unit (ECU): Headliner
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