The future will provide automation to many aspects of our lives. Usage of devices such as drones, robots and self-driving vehicles will increase exponentially over the next decade.
All such devices rely on motors that set them in motion – the motor is “the heart” of every device. The durability and performance of the device depends on the motor’s design, which can enhance the quality of the equipment.
The BLDC technological revolution has influenced the industry by offering improvements to DC motors such as peak-power at optimal efficiency in the smallest possible size and weight. Today, we can find brushless motors in numerous applications. To keep up with the soaring market for these products, manufacturers are turning to a new generation of BLDC motors powered by a lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries.
Thomas, a brand of Ingersoll Rand is a leading provider of highly engineered products for OEM applications and Thomas is no stranger to BLDC technology. Thomas’ experienced in-house Engineering team has been designing and developing BLDC motor technology into pump and compressor solutions for over twenty-five years for OEMs around the world.
Brushless DC motors, also known as electronically commutated brushless motors (EC) are powered by a DC electric source and, compared to traditional solutions, spare parts i.e. commutator and brushes have been removed.
In this type of motor design, the mechanical commutator has been replaced by an electronic speed control system, while the traditional rotor winding has been replaced
by properly connected permanent magnets. These motors are growing in popularity and more OEMs are specifying them in their designs because of the overall value.
The brushless DC motor is significantly different from a conventional brush type DC motor. It consists of magnets, coils and a commutator, but the coils are stationary inside the casing, and the magnets are placed on the rotor. The commutator is electrically controlled. Its system turns on and off the power to the coils, where the magnetic field causes the rotor to rotate. EC motors operate on the same principle as “DC” motors, which is why they are called “BLDC” motors.
In a standard DC motor, the rotor is set in motion with brushes. There are several considerations to take into account with a brush type design due to friction between brushes and rotor:
Whereas a lack of brushes in a brushless DC motor will result in:
The following table compares and rates brushless DC motors vs. Brush DC motors vs. AC motors
It is important to note that although the initial cost of BLDC is slightly higher than DC or AC motors, the total cost of ownership is compensated by the motor’s variable output, longer and efficient life, reliability, and less service requirements.
BLDC drive systems should be considered for:
Medical, Laboratory, Food and Beverage, Environmental and Mobile Markets all benefit from the advantages and overall value that only BLDC technology can provide.
These are some of applications that OEMs have benefited from the overall value of our pumps with brushless DC motors:
Any BLDC motor requires a motor controller in order to operate. That’s why we provide motor controllers that can be custom designed by our dedicated in-house resources to meet your exact system requirement.
With a wide range of pressure, vacuum and liquid technologies including WOB-L® piston, articulated piston, diaphragm, miniature diaphragm, rotary vane, miniature rotary vane, linear and peristaltic, Thomas offers the broadest oil-less product range in the industry. With this vast product offering, Thomas can design an ideal, custom pressure or vacuum pump solution which meet our customers’ precise needs.
Our Product Manager, Jamie Campbell is available to answer your questions and help you find the right solution for your specific application requirements. Ask about qualifying for a free sample.