Electric Machines with Inherent Speed-Dependent Characteristics for More Sustainable and Efficient Energy Conversion
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Half of the total electric energy consumed within the European Union is used for operating electric machines. Those might feature high efficiency for rated load, but partial load and overload performance often is very poor. Additionally, given some voltage and current limits for driving machines, designers need to trade good performance at high torque versus high-speed capabilities. Machines with speed-dependent characteristics would facilitate overcoming the current limitations and thus are the subject of this ERC project. The main approach for realizing operation dependent machine characteristics is to acquit oneself of thinking that the electric machine structure must be static. Allowing solid parts of the rotor to change in position or powder-based compounds to vary in local density while rotating enables a new class of designs. The realization requires all-new methods for designing the speed-dependent properties. This embraces techniques for co-simulating mechanical and electromagnetic aspects including components? or particles? movement, the experiment-driven characterization of powder-based soft magnetic materials with variable local density, micro- versus macroscopic modelling of magnetic properties, and the development of promising concepts for future electric machine design and their experimental proof of concept. The basic idea is simple, but its effective implementation is challenging and requires pioneering cross-disciplinary research. The PI has successfully demonstrated the ability to advance the state-of-the-art in electric machine design. The gained results will allow for simultaneously achieving higher net efficiency levels and reducing the consumption of resources due to an improved utilization of the applied components. The project will thus help to reduce the overall energy consumption and to minimize the need for critical raw materials. The reward of this project is tremendous and the expected outcome will beneficially affect our future lives.