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Motors and Controllers for Electric Vehicles

Learn how to design a motor and controller for electric vehicles in this free online engineering course.

Publisher: NPTEL
It seems that the electric motor will replace the internal combustion engine within the next few decades and this free online course helps you to take advantage of the opportunities created by such a change. Aspiring automotive engineers must understand how to design electric motors for electric vehicles and we can train you to implement the engineering principles that drive this fascinating process.
Motors and Controllers for Electric Vehicles
  • Duration

    6-10 Hours
  • Students

  • Accreditation


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Many major car-manufacturing companies have declared that most if not all of the vehicles they produce will be electric within the next two decades, which could render the internal combustion engine obsolete, a relic kept around only for car enthusiasts and collectors. This means that automotive engineers require familiarity with the new technology and this course provides the tools you need to take your career to the next level. We begin with energy flow as every electrical and mechanical engineer needs to understand Ohm’s and Kirchhoff's laws and how they apply to the flow of electric, thermal and magnetic energy. We demonstrate how to convert the electric energy from a battery into mechanical energy inside a motor. We explain how this energy is used to produce torque inside an electric motor, how a gearbox multiplies torque and how to calculate energy loss and efficiency.

We then analyse the production of torque in more detail using a permanent magnet direct current motor (PMDC), which creates a magnetic field for operation. We investigate the physics that creates torque inside this motor by calculating torque using the different force vectors produced by the electric current and magnetic flux. We also consider the role that computation plays in the production of torque inside an electric motor. This brings us to the permanent magnet synchronous motor (PMSM), which has higher torque, smaller frame size and no rotor current. We examine two types of PMSM motors, how they operate using alternating current and how electronic switching is used to control commutation, making the PMSM ideal for electric vehicles. We study how torque is produced inside a PMSM motor using the d-q frame theory to show you how to design a field-oriented control and calculate three-phase circuits. We also cover the role of ‘Park and Clarke transforms’ and their inverse to calculate currents.

This helps you to create a thermal profile for your motor. We reference Ohm’s law and combine it with Norton’s theorem to calculate the flow of heat to improve resistance along the way. This thermal profile lets you judge whether your motor’s peak temperatures meet international standards. This course helps anyone pursuing automotive engineering, whether they are studying or seeking a career boost in this exciting and expanding field. With electric vehicles taking over the market, studying their motors and controllers can only enhance your prospects.

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