The lack of electronic control systems limited early electric vehicle speeds to 20 miles per hour. The comfort of gasoline-powered vehicles, together with a poor recharging system, compelled car owners to dump the electric vehicle. Nevertheless, technological advancements such as the brushless DC motor (BLDC motor) have made such energy-efficient cars more viable.
What is an automotive motor?
Motor Control has become a key focus area for automotive motor applications, from traditional Body & Convenience and Chassis & Safety to smart and more advanced domains such as Electro-Mobility and ePowertrain. The need for more efficient systems, in order to cope with the challenging emission regulations, encourages the replacement of engine-powered components, such as fluid pumps and air conditioning, with electric motors that can now be controlled in a smarter manner.
Brushed DC motors are the ideal and cost-effective solutions for actuating where there is a need for short duty time. On the other hand, Brushless DC (BLDC) motors demand sophisticated algorithms and high computing capacities, which make them the best choice for challenging applications that require long-term duty time and safety standards.
Whatever the car type, electric motors are now omnipresent in low-and medium-end cars, rising to 60-70 in the premium segment; high-voltage traction inverters support or even take over ICE engines and 48V small electric motors play a crucial role in reducing CO2 emissions, thanks to smarter Starter Generator and e-Turbochargers.
Types of Motors used in Electric Vehicles
Electric vehicles aren't something new, but with technological advances and growing concern about pollution control, they are labeled as the future of mobility. Apart from the Electric Vehicle Batteries, which removes the Internal Combustion motors, the core element of the EV is an electric motor. Rapid advances in the field of power electronics and control systems have created opportunities for different kinds of electric motors to be used in electric vehicles. Electric motors used for automotive applications usually have characteristics such as high starting torque, high power density, good performance, etc.
1. DC Series Motor
The high starting torque capacity of the DC Series motor makes it an acceptable choice for traction applications. It was the most commonly used traction motor in the early 1900s. The benefits of this motor are simple speed control and the ability to withstand a sudden increase in load. All these features make it a perfect traction motor. High maintenance due to brushes and commutators is the main drawback of the DC series motor.
2. Brushless DC Motors
It's similar to DC motors that have permanent magnets. They have been termed as 'brushless' because it doesn't have a commutator and a brush arrangement. The commutation is conducted electronically in this motor since the BLDC motors do not require maintenance. BLDC motors have traction characteristics such as high starting torque, high efficiency around 95-98 percent, among many others. BLDC motors are ideal for high power density design approach. They are the most favored motors for the use of electric vehicles due to their traction characteristics.
3. Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor (PMSM)
The motor is also identical to the BLDC motor, which has permanent magnets on its rotor. Similar to those motors, these ones also have traction properties such as high power density and high performance. The difference is that PMSM has an EMF sinusoidal back, while BLDC has an EMF trapezoidal back. Permanent magnet synchronous motors are offered to the consumers for higher power levels. PMSM is the best choice for high-performance vehicles such as cars and buses. Despite the increased cost, PMSM is providing tough competition to induction motors due to the increased performance than the latter. PMSM is also more powerful than the BLDC motors. Many car manufacturers use PMSM motors for their hybrid and electric vehicles.
How has the automotive motor industry grown over the years?
The motors are a critical part of a vehicle that makes it easy to work. It is used in various vehicle operations in several mechanical or electronic systems that include continuous rotational motion. It also has a motor in it. Motors are used in multiple vehicle applications, such as power steering motors, battery cooling fans, seat cooling fans, engine cooling fans, wiper systems, power window motors, and other applications where comfort is as important as driving efficiency.
The use of electric motors in cars has seen a steady increase in recent years. It is expected that increased reliance on upgrading design and manufacturing processes in order to deliver better goods with improved efficiency will bode well for product demand. The industry is witnessing significant growth as a result of the increase in the production of vehicles and the number of motors used in a particular vehicle.
The bottom line…
The automotive motor market is growing due to a wide range of prompting factors. These include increased government initiatives, energy-efficient evaluation programs, higher demand from the automotive industry and so forth. The government has taken many steps to boost the motor's performance. Some of the biggest tech firms have joined forces with automotive companies to transform the way automobiles function these days.
The growth in electric vehicle technology is significantly reducing carbon emissions without spending a fortune. This has been made possible with more companies developing electric motor vehicles. Big data and AI also play a key role in the configuration of vehicles, reminding car owners of when their vehicles require maintenance. In addition, the growth in self-driving vehicles and the ability of CaaS as a mobility service would significantly save consumers while also increasing their safety.