Electric Machines
Innovative solutions for thermal design of electric machines
The electrification of the industrialized world is accelerating and Electric Machines are responsible for 60% of energy consumption world wide. Today, the twin monsters of unbridled consumer demand and scarcity of required materials makes it ever more important to optimize designs of electric machines with better simulation tools.
  • External air cooling of an induction machine: The machine interior is totally sealed to prevent dust from entering through very fine air gaps. The external fan is rotating, blowing air outside the machine.
  • This exploded view of an electric motor shows the surface temperature distribution and polyhedral mesh generated with STAR-CCM+ for a forced air cooling simulation.
  • A water jacket cooled motor: STAR-CCM+ in combination with SPEED is an integrated toolset for virtual prototyping of electric machines which delivers the power of computational fluid dynamics and heat transfer simulation technology.
  • This early example of the finite-volume-based STAR-CCM+ EM Field Solver shows proximity effects in a stranded conductor.
  • An exploded view of the Grundfos MAGNA-series circulator pump: tight space restrictions lead to a complex geometry for in-depth cooling analysis (image courtesy of Grundfos, Denmark).
  • This image shows a cross-section view of the electric current density and magnitude of the magnetic flux density in an electric machine.

Control of component and system temperatures remains one of the most significant challenges in the design of electronic systems because excessive thermal loading limits the maximum performance of an electronic device or an electric machine and significantly increases the energy footprint of the system. The simple truth is that, in an increasingly competitive market place, simulation can provide the necessary insight into the performance of a new device. Deploying CFD in the early stages of the design process avoids expensive redesigns as the machine nears production and ensures that optimal designs are chosen.

STAR-CCM+ in combination with SPEED is an integrated toolset for virtual prototyping of electric machines and delivers the power of a very efficient design of the machine with integrated electromagnetic, fluid dynamics and heat transfer simulation technology:

SPEED has been in the business of electric machine designs for  a quarter of a century and and has been successfully used in the design of thousands of products. Based on a deep underlying theory of the electric machine, it calculates almost all aspects of design in an efficient way. In addition, because of its speed of execution, there is no waiting time for the designer, a critical requirement in assuring design productivity. SPEED is also capable of contributing geometry and heat loads to STAR-CCM+ allowing for a full flow and thermal analysis of the electrical machine.

STAR-CCM+ has a solver for Magnetic Vector Potential, which operates in stationary and transient mode and couples to electrical potential solver for electromagnetic problems.This capability, when coupled with the existing models - namely fluid flow, heat transfer and structural mechanics - enables the electromechanical, thermal and structural analyses to be carried out from the same model. This allows simulation engineers to accurately visualize the performance of electric machines at the edge of their operating envelopes.

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