Copper, material typically used for the windings of conventional electric motors, is more expensive and heavier than aluminium. For this reason as well, they have started the first experimentations of aluminium windings for electric motors, expected to replace a fundamental role, that is to say generating the electromagnetic field for the rotor.
Concerning this, protagonist is the British company Ricardo, which has started developing electric motors with aluminium windings intended for small-size electric cars.
Ricardo has been developing a rare-earth magnet-free sustainable electric motor concept with aluminium stator windings, which retains the key attributes of magnet-rich motors. The goal has been to create technology which is robust, costs less than current products and reduces lifecycle impact by eliminating the use of scarce resources for example up to 12kg of rare earth metals and also high acidification materials such as copper without impacting motor function or quality.
Therefore, aluminium is no longer used just for the bars of induction motors thanks to UK-Alumotor, led by Ricardo with Aspire Engineering, Brandauer, Warwick Manufacturing Group at The University of Warwick, Phoenix Scientific Industries, and Global Technologies Racing, is a consortium of experts formed to develop a supply chain around an innovative proprietary design for an electric motor.
The consortium’s aim is to grow UK manufacturing capability and to develop the next generation of skilled engineers and technicians.
UK-Alumotor consortium has received an award from Driving Electric Revolution Challenge fund – through UK Research and Innovation – to establish a UK supply chain for electric machines: leveraging manufacturing expertise to deliver next generation sustainable electric motors.