Permanent magnets made using rare-earth metals is what currently drives the electric auto motors. These rare-earth metals are 15 elements that run the periodic table from 57 to 71 including yttrium and scandium which are soft silvery-white heavy metals. Very destructive to the environment and almost entirely controlled by China, but used in a wide range of electronics from computers, cell phones to current electric/hyrid auto's. Not much in the electronic industry is not using some rare-earth metals.
MAHLE under the guidance of Dr. Martin Berger, MAHLE Vice President for Corporate Research and Advanced Engineering has stated that the MAHLE breakthrough shows that the New Generation of Traction Motors is the best way forward for a cleaner planet. MAHLE traction motor does not require the rare-earth magnets for a magnetic field generation but instead uses an excitation coil located in the rotor to do the same job. As a result, the MAHLE traction motor is rare-earth material free reducing the impact on the earth and over all society while also making it much cheaper to produce these motors.
Wireless inductive power transmission which this motor uses inside allows for contact-free parts which has no friction allowing for no wear and long life. Inductive motors have now overcome the durability question which was critical in the past. Efficiency of the technology is boosted by current advanced digital control systems.
As per Dr. Berger, "To get energy to the rotor, it uses an alternating field which is then converted into direct current for the magnet coils. These magnet coils replace the permanent magnets. They induce a magnetic field into the air gap and causes the motor to generate torque."
This new traction motor is able to achieve 96 plus percent efficiency according to MAHLE. Eliminating exposure to fluctuating costs of the expensive materials and any ethical concerns with having to rely on a material supply that is controlled by China.
Per MAHLE this new traction motor allows a major step towards sustainable mobility while helping to minimize the impact on the planet.
Better yet is that these motors are maintenance-free while being suitable for a wide range of applications.