Prestigious Engineering Award for Tevva and AEM Ltd
Winner – High Density Switched Reluctance Motors
Timed to coincide with the Royal Academy of Engineering, This is Engineering Day – Nov 6th,
A new magnet-free electric motor design that was developed by Advanced Electric Machines (AEM) in partnership with Tevva Motors Ltd, University of Newcastle and Motor Design Ltd, has scooped two innovation awards from The Engineer magazine.
The High Density Switched Reluctance Motor (HDSRM) eliminates the use of rare earth permanent magnets and copper – important sustainability factors in the development of electric motors.
Switched reluctance motors have been around almost as long as the internal combustion engine but have weaknesses that have limited their use in electric vehicles. These include being noisy, suffering from ‘torque ripple’ fluctuations and using expensive rare earth metals that are difficult to dispose of.
AEM and Tevva’s breakthrough technology – which won the overall Grand Prix award and the Automotive category at The Engineer’s Collaborate 2 Innovate awards ceremony on Wednesday Nov 6 – makes for a more sustainable and cheaper alternative to permanent magnet motors without compromising on performance.
The HDSRM uses aluminium rather than copper – aluminium is cheaper and easier to recycle while AEM has also made it possible to drive the SR motor using the same power electronics as a permanent magnet motor. While it appears to the power electronics as a standard three-phase motor, it is in fact a six-phase design, which solves the torque ripple and noise problems.
Tevva CEO, Robin Mackie, said: “Tevva and AEM have been working closely together for over three years to develop specific technologies suitable for the commercial electric vehicle market.
The advantage of working with AEM technology is that it allows us to move away from permanent magnet machines, provides a modular design and allows operation at higher than normal temperatures. It is our intention to accumulate more than one million operational miles in order to support future generations of the technology.”