Do you need to get a DC motor for your engineering project, but you don’t know about it? Or you need more information on how to apply it to an electronic device? Then you’re in the right place.
DC motors are essential if you want to create motion in any device, but understanding it could be tricky—because it’s filled with a ton of maths and physics concepts.
So, if you’re facing such a hurdle, you need a simplified guide to help. That’s where we come in. Also, this article will reveal to you what you need to know about DC motors, how they work, their types, and various applications.
1. What Is a DC Motor and How Does It Work?
In this section, we’ll be defining a DC motor and explaining to you how it works.
1.1. What Is a DC Motor?
Image showing a DC Motor
DC motors are electrical machines that convert electrical energy into motion. As a rotary machine, the DC motor converts electrical power through direct currents. Also, DC motors can vary in power and size—small as the motors that power toys and large as mechanisms that power elevators and vehicles.
But that’s not all.
A DC motor has two crucial components: an armature coil and a stator. Also, the armature spin is the rotary part of the Hobby motor, while the stator is the part that remains stationary.
Again, stators are like permanent horseshoe magnets that supply the magnetic field needed for the armature to rotate.
In addition, DC motors are great for powering a range of devices, especially if you want to make them move. Because it varies in size, you can use it for larger projects or smaller ones.
Plus, you can find DC motors in many portable home appliances, automobiles, and industrial equipment.
1.2. What Is the Basic Principle of a DC Motor
For a DC motor to produce motion, it follows a fundamental principle.
And it states:
Whenever you place a current-carrying conductor (armature fields) in a magnetic field (stators), it causes a mechanical force (motion).
According to this principle, DC motors will only work when the current-carrying armature current experiences a force powerful enough to move it—when placed in a magnetic field—provided by the stators.
2. Types of DC Motors
Now that you know what DC motors are and how they work let’s look at the types of DC motors available; single motor or dual motor driver.
1. Brushless DC motor
brushless dc motor
You can tell from the name that a brushless DC motor is a mini electric motor with no brushes.
Also, brushes are sliding devices that allow the electricity to flow into the copper coil of wire.
How then do brushless DC motors generate power and motion?
First off, the brushless DC motor has a rotor with permanent magnets. Plus, the stator has electromagnets surrounded by motor components, windings, and coils. Also, the coils here are stationary, eliminating the need for brushes.
So, the rotor spins 180 degrees because of the electric current that passes through the armature circuit. Plus, the electromagnetic poles mandatorily rotate for the electric current to continue running.
- Brushless motors do not produce sparks or friction noises when in use
- Effective in flammable environments
- No brushes, no maintenance
- It is cheaper than traditional brushed motors with the same power
- More reliable than brushed DC motors
- Provides low energy costs
- Requires an electronic driver
- The specific power is generally lower.
2.The Brushed DC Motors
brushed DC motor
Brushed DC motors are counterparts of brushless DC motors. This electric motor and miniature motors generate mechanical force—directly from the direct current power supplied to the motor.
Also, it uses internal commutation, stationary magnets, rotating electromagnets, and of course, brushes.
The brushes consist of carbon or graphite, and it comes with dispersed copper, which helps to improve conductivity.
- Attractive prices
- High reliability
- Current sensing
- Remarkable carbon brushes
- Simple control of motor speed, no complicated motor speed
- High maintenance and low life span for high intensive users
3. Shunt DC Motors
A DC shunt model is a basic motor driver with its field coil connected in shunt or parallel to the armature. Because of this parallel connection, the field and armature windings receive the same operating voltage range.
- Wide speed range
- Outstanding series motor
- Efficient motor drive
- You can independently control the armature voltage and field windings
- You can use Shunt DC motors on a DC machine if a wide range of torque and speed is necessary
- Bad for low-speed operations
- Large size when compared to other motors
- Expensive installation costs
4. Series DC Motors
copper winding procedure for Series DC motors
The field and armature windings are connected in series for the Series DC motor, allowing higher currents to pass through.
Also, the Series DC motor makes use of the electromagnetic law to convert electrical energy into mechanical energy.
In terms of structure, the Series DC motor is similar to the brushed DC motors. Plus, It comprises components like brushes, stators, armatures, and so on.
- Highest starting torque
- Delivers high torque even when overloaded
- Low power supply consumption
- Poor speed regulation.
- An increase in speed leads to a decrease in torque.
- Only effective when loaded.
5. Cored DC Motors
winding copper coil for DC motors
Cored DC motors are a popular type of motor—found in industrial machines used for high volume manufacturing.
But that’s not all.
The cored DC motor also comes with permanent magnets, rotors, commutators, synchronous motors, motor drive systems, motor driver carriers, and stators.
Plus, the armature windings are wrapped around the iron core and connected to the commutator. Cored DC motors are ideal for large-scale applications like cars and small-scale applications like toys.
- Very cost-effective
- Low-voltage motors
- Sturdy motor controller
- Reasonable speed control over several voltages
- You can start, stop, and reverse—with ease
- High maintenance because of brushes
6. Coreless DC Motor
a set of coreless DC motors used in making drones
The coreless DC motor is quite similar to the cored DC motor. It also has brushes and commutators, but the difference lies in the rotor windings. Plus, the Coreless DC motor has a honeycomb build.
The coreless DC motor has features of the brushed and brushless motors, hence its variations. Moreover, you can use the Coreless DC motors for advanced mechanics like robotics.
- Minimal noise and vibrations when active
- It has a longer life span
- Can accelerate and decelerate at high rates
- Small and lightweight design
- High efficiency
- More expensive than the other motors
- No heat sink mechanism to handle thermal overloads
- It requires additional electronics to run perfectly
3. Applications of DC motors
You can use DC motors for a lot of things. Plus, the electric motor works well for dynamic braking and reversing, and its adjustable speed makes it the best option for industrial machines.
Here’s a list of the best applications of DC motors.
- For toys, tools, and other household appliances
- Turntables and conveyor belts
- Industrial environments
- Robotics engineering
- Lathes, Drills, shapers, and spinning and weaving machines
- Elevators, Air compressors, cranes, and hair dryers
A key factor to deciding what DC motor to buy is determining what works best for your project or application. For example, a toymaker would go for small-scale motors while industrialized firms would go for large and highly mechanized motors.
In the end, you should go for a DC motor that’s most tailored for your organization—considering the different sizes and types of DC motors—which I’ve listed earlier in this article.
So, this article aims to help you pick the most suitable DC motor with the best service life for the job.
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