how does an electric car motor work?

and how much would it cost to build one?

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  • 9 years ago
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    There are two types of electric motors used in cars. Induction motors require an inverter to transform the DC current into AC. These are like electric motors you plug into a wall outlet, a fan, refrigerator, etc. The other type is a permanent magnet motor. These are like toy car motors that run on batteries... only bigger of course. The induction motors are more efficient, but cost more. The DC motors are easier to install, but require more maintenance... like changing brushes. They also emit ozone, and small amounts of carbon (in the form of graphite) from the brushes wearing down. HOW they work: The induction motor uses a preset number of windings in the stator (the coils on the perimeter) vs the number of sections in the rotor. The speed of this type of motor is controlled by the frequency of AC current (i.e. U.S. household current is 60Hz), and the power (torque) is controlled by the amperage going into the motor. The voltage is generally kept within a certain range. The permanent magnet motor has a set of magnets where the stator would be in the induction motor. The rotor has the coils of wire. The electricity is transferred to these coils through a segmented copper ring or cylinder... the segments in line with the brushes and magnets make the timing just right. Speed (RPM) is controlled by voltage, and power (torque) is controlled by amperage. Both these motors have their advantages and disadvantages. In my opinion, if you are building an electric car, save your money in the beginning and go for the induction motor system. It will save you money in the long run, and maintenance time too! Hope this helps!

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