G4 bearingless motor.
The G4 bearingless motor is a new type of motor that was successfully demonstrated on August 16, 2005, at the NASA Glenn Research Center. This innovative motor can be applied to high-speed, long-life, or broad-temperature-range products. It combines the features of a typical permanent-magnet motor with the functions of a magnetic bearing and can be operated as a motor or a generator, transferring energy to or from a load. One unique feature of this motor is that it produces forces in the radial and axial directions, and as a result, two motors can be used to levitate a rotor system. Fault tolerance is another feature of the motor, enabling it to continue operating even after partial failure of the electronics or wiring. The fundamental scientific accomplishment is the successful motoring and levitation of a rotor in all degrees of freedom using electromagnetic control from only two magnetic actuators. Practically, this configuration brings the long-life, noncontact, broad operating temperature range and rotordynamic benefits of magnetic bearing technology to a motorized system in a compact form factor.
This innovation is protected under U.S. Provisional Patent Applications 60/548,892; 60/548,893; and 60/548,894 owned by the University of Toledo. The work was performed by University of Toledo, QSS Group, Inc., Analex Corporation, and National Research Council personnel working for Glennís Advanced Electrical Systems Branch and Structural Mechanics and Dynamics Branch. The work was funded by the Aerospace Flywheel Technology Program and the Advanced Mechanisms and Tribology Technologies for Durable Lightweight Actuation and Mechanical Power Transmission Systems (MTLAMPS) Project.Glenn contact: James F. Soeder, 216-433-5328, James.F.Soeder@nasa.gov
Last updated: October 11, 2006
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