CUED Publications database

Optimum Magnetic Circuit Configurations for Permanent Magnet Aerospace Generators

Amaratunga, GAJ and Acarnley, PP and Mc Laren, PG (1985) Optimum Magnetic Circuit Configurations for Permanent Magnet Aerospace Generators. IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems, AES-21. pp. 230-255. ISSN 0018-9251

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In the design of high-speed low-power electrical generators for unmanned aircraft and spacecraft, maximization of specific output (power/weight) is of prime importance. Several magnetic circuit configurations (radial-field, axial-field, flux-squeezing, homopolar) have been proposed, and in this paper the relative merits of these configurations are subjected to a quantitative investigation over the speed range 10 000–100000 rev/min and power range 250 W-10 kW. The advantages of incorporating new high energy-density magnetic materials are described. Part I deals with establishing an equivalent circuit for permanent-magnet generators. For each configuration the equivalent circuit parameters are related to the physical dimensions of the generator components and an optimization procedure produces a minimum volume design at discrete output powers and operating speeds. The technique is illustrated by a quantitative comparison of the specific outputs of conventional radial-field generators with samarium cobalt and alnico magnets. In Part II the specific outputs of conventional, flux-squeezing, and claw-rotor magnetic circuit configurations are compared. The flux-squeezing configuration is shown to produce the highest specific output for small sizes whereas the conventional configuration is best at large sizes. For all sizes the claw-rotor configuration is significantly inferior. In Part III the power densities available from axial-field and flux-switching magnetic circuit configurations are maximized, over the power range 0.25-10 kW and speed range 10 000–100000 rpm, and compared to the results of Parts I & II. For the axial-field configuration the power density is always less than that of the conventional and flux-squeezing radial-field configurations. For the flux-switching generator, which is able to withstand relatively high mechanical forces in the rotor, the power density is again inferior to the radial-field types, but the difference is less apparent for small (low power, high speed) generator sizes. From the combined results it can be concluded that the flux-squeezing and conventional radial-field magnetic circuit configurations yield designs with minimum volume over the power and speed ranges considered. © 1985, IEEE. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Div B > Electronics, Power & Energy Conversion
Depositing User: Unnamed user with email
Date Deposited: 16 Jul 2015 14:11
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2015 09:10
DOI: 10.1109/TAES.1985.310620