Adaptive rudder control for Kayak

I volunteer with people like myself with spinal cord injury.

I am currently working on a project to adapt a Fishing Kayak for higher level injuries from para’s to quads.

The idea is to retro fit the existing ruder system with an electric actuator to provide direction control.

Power supply will be the existing 12volt deep cycle battery that powers a fish finder and electric fishing reel.

The steering system I envisage would be made up of the actuator any necessary driver and a micro controller to interface with various input devices appropriate for the user.

Users with high level SCI would perhaps use a sip and puff controller to provide the input to steer the kayak.

connection with the rudder would be by a cable push/pull method.

The actuator would need to provide 10-20nm of torque. (I am yet to measure this precisely)

Cost is not a factor.

Currently para’s use their arms to pump/cycle the drive system in the kayak. The idea is to later expand on this project to include propulsion from an electric motor to allow quads full control and independence.

The coding and user interface is not a problem what I am looking for though is the best choice of actuator to provide the needed torque and positioning (preferably without any homing or calibration).

The whole setup will be housed inside the hull of the kayak and protected as much as possible in some type of enclosure however salt water exposure is still an issue to consider as well.

I’m open to any and all ideas and suggestions.