Magnomatics wins £100,000 Smart Award to advance Pseudo Direct Drive technology

Magnomatics has received a £99,900 Smart Award to develop its Pseudo Direct Drive (PDD) technology.

The grant from Innovate UK for the £167,000 project will allow Yorkshire-based Magnomatics to further develop the PDD, which is aimed at providing next generation low noise and vibration electric motor technology to urban and suburban rail markets.

Magnomatics have so far produced prototype quanties of its motors, but the grant will allow them to be developed further beyond the largely first-generation designs used so far.

Magnomatics’ PDD motor are claimed to offer a significant advance over conventional permanent magnet motor technology and can displace incumbent machinery such as gearboxes, while maintaining high efficiency, offering low maintenance costs and high reliability.

The advantages of the PDD are said to have already been demonstrated in two Innovate UK funded projects under the LCV IDP programme with Volvo Powertrain and a consortium including Dennis-Eagle and MIRA, in which the motor demonstrated significant efficiency and packaging advantages over existing technology.

In a statement, David Latimer, CEO at Magnomatics, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this Smart Award. The grant funding will allow us to further develop the Pseudo Direct Drive, which we feel offers a significant advantage over existing technologies in the urban and suburban rail markets.”

According to Magnomatics, the PDD combines a magnetic gear with a standard wound stator. The outer arrays of magnets are fixed to the internal bore of the stator and the magnetic fields generated by the windings are used to drive the internal rotor. The company adds that the torque produced by this rotor is then geared up in the magnetic gear and transmitted out via the steel pole pieces, resulting in an extremely compact, highly torque dense machine.  The natural elasticity resulting from the magnetic gear means that the output torque has extremely low levels of ripple (<0.3%).