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ELECTROTEHNIC, ELECTRONIC, AUTOMATIC, vol. 61, nr.

1, ianuarie-martie 2013

19

Influence of Z-2p Combination on the PMSM Performances


Tiberiu TUDORACHE, Bogdan Daniel DUMITRU, Mircea MODREANU
Abstract

This paper deals with the numerical analysis of a series of Permanent Magnet Synchronous
Machines (PMSM) with the purpose to identify favourable combinations of the number of slots Z
and number of poles 2p that lead to reduced values of Cogging Torque (CT) and Unbalanced
Radial Forces (URF). The numerical analysis is carried out on PMSMs with 10, 12 and 14 poles
and with a variable number of slots between 12 and 45. This study uses the field computation
software package FLUX based on Finite Element Method (FEM), followed by analytical calculations
for the estimation of URF.
Keywords: PMSM, cogging torque, unbalanced radial forces

1. Introduction
The Permanent Magnet Synchronous
Machines are electromechanical converters
used frequently both as motors and
generators in various industrial applications
as electric or hybrid vehicles, naval
propulsion, wind turbines, machine tools,
etc. [1]-[6].
The most used PMSM are based on
radial magnetic flux with Permanent
Magnets (PMs) glued on the rotor surface or
with interior magnets [9]-[10].
The main advantages of PMSM, in
comparison with electromagnetic excitation
synchronous machine, are the high
efficiency and reliability, the lack of sliding
contacts, compactness, etc. [7]-[8].
A disadvantage of PMSM is represented
by the Cogging Torque (CT) and
Unbalanced Radial Forces (URF) that
appear due to the interaction of PMs
mounted on the rotor and the anisotropic
stator core structure. High values of CT and
URF may generate high level of acoustic
noise and mechanical vibrations that could
reduce the bearings lifetime [11]-[15].
Several methods to reduce CT values

Tiberiu TUDORACHE, PhD., Universitatea Politehnica din


Bucureti, Facultatea de Inginerie Electric, Splaiul
Independenei, nr. 313, Bucureti, Romnia,
tiberiu.tudorache@upb.ro
Mircea, MODREANU, PhD., Icpe, Splaiul Unirii, nr. 313,
Bucureti, Romnia, mircea.messico@icpe.ro
Daniel Bogdan DUMITRU, Eng., Icpe, Splaiul Unirii, nr.
313, Bucureti, Romnia, bogdandumitru.messico@icpe.ro

are studied, [7]-[8], consisting in teeth or


PMs skewing, optimization of magnetic
poles shape, asymmetrical teeth or PMs
placement etc.
This paper deals with the numerical
analysis of a series of PMSMs with a
number of poles 2p {10, 12, 14} and with
a number of slots Z between 12 and 45, with
the purpose of finding the best combinations
that lead simultaneously to small CT and
URF [12], [16]-[17].
2. Numerical analysis of PMSM
The numerical analysis used to compute
the CT and URF of a series of PMSM is
based on the 2D magnetostatic field model.
The
partial
differential
equation
associated to the magnetostatic regime of
electromagnetic
field,
expressed
in
magnetic vector potential A, is the following
[18]:
1

rot (rot A - Br ) = 0

(1)

where:
is the magnetic permeability of
materials
Br is the remnant magnetic flux density
of permanent magnets.
In order to ensure the uniqueness
solution of (1), the material properties and
the boundary conditions should be known.
In our case, the permanent magnets are
of NdFeB type with Br = 1.23 T and

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ELECTROTEHNIC, ELECTRONIC, AUTOMATIC, vol. 61, Nr. 1, ianuarie-martie 2013

r = 1.08756 and the boundary conditions


are of Dirichlet type (A = 0) on the outer and
inner boundaries of the computation
domain, as showen in Figure 1.

By solving the 2D magnetostatic field


problem, we obtained the magnetic field
lines and the distribution of magnetic flux
density in the computation domain (see
Figure 3).

Figure 1. Regions of 2D computation domain for


2p = 14 and Z = 30

The numerical analysis was carried out


using the Finite Element (FE) based
software package FLUX2D [19].
The support of our analysis is a small
power MPSM characterized by the following
main data: stator core outer/inner diameters
135.2 mm/90 mm, axial length 15 mm, airgap length 0.5 mm, no. of poles
2p {10, 12, 14}.
Stator slots are uniformly distributed
along the air-gap, their number being
denoted with Z. The permanent magnets
mounted on the rotor are radially and
alternatively magnetized.
The regions of the 2D computation
domain for a given PMSM structure are
shown in Figure 1: the stator slots, the stator
and rotor magnetic cores, the air-gap and
the permanent magnets.
In Figure 2, there are presented the
mesh of the computation domain; three
layers of finite elements in the airgap region
are used to ensure a higher computation
precision of CT and URF.

Figure 2. Mesh of the 2D computation domain for


2p = 14 and Z = 30

Figure 3. Magnetic field lines and flux density for


2p = 14 and Z = 30 chart

3. Numerical evaluation of CT for a


series of PMSMs
By solving the 2D magnetostatic
problems for different rotor positions, we
obtain the oscillations of CT and evaluate its
amplitude using the virtual work method
[12].
In order to identify PMSMs with reduced
CT, a numerical analysis was carried out for
a series of machines with 10, 12 and 14
poles and with a number of stator slots Z
comprised between 12 and 45. The number
of slots Z was chosen among those that
allow the execution of three phase windings
and they were determined separated for
each number of poles using the Koil
software package.
For PMSMs with 10 poles, the series of
possible slots numbers Z is {12, 15,
18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 33, 36, 39, 42, 45}.
In case of PMSMs with 12 poles, the
possible
numbers
of
slots
Z
is
{18, 27, 36, 45} and for PMSMs with 14
poles Z is {12, 18, 24, 30, 36, 42}.
The stator core structure for different
numbers of slots Z was designed so as to
keep the average magnetic flux density in
the stator teeth around 1.6-1.8 T.
In literature, there are two recommendations that refer to the reduction of CT
amplitude.
The first one refers to the greatest

ELECTROTEHNIC, ELECTRONIC, AUTOMATIC, vol. 61, nr. 1, ianuarie-martie 2013

common divisor C1 of the pair (Z, 2p) that


should be minimum (C1=gcd(Z, 2p)=min.)
[12], and the second one refers to the ratio
between the number of poles 2p and the
greatest common divisor of Z and 2p that
should be maximum (C2=2p/C1=max.) [8].
By successive FE computations for the
proposed combinations (Z, 2p), we obtained
the numerical results shown in Table 1.
Table 1. Numerical results of CT, C1 and C2 coefficients
versus no. of slots Z

2p

10

12

14

Z
12
15
18
21
24
27
30
33
36
39
42
45
18
27
36
45
12
18
24
30
36
42

CT
0.105
1.733
0.035
0.005
0.012
0.004
0.324
0.002
0.014
0.001
0.025
0.120
1.260
0.115
1.495
0.028
0.105
0.030
0.027
0.019
0.053
2.033

C1
2
5
2
1
2
1
10
1
2
1
2
5
6
3
12
3
2
2
2
2
2
14

C2
5
2
5
10
5
10
1
10
5
10
5
2
2
4
1
4
7
7
7
7
7
1

These results include the amplitudes of


CT, C1 and C2 coefficients versus number of
slots Z, for PMSMs with 10, 12 and 14
poles. The analysis of the results will be
done first independently for PMSMs with 10,
12 and 14 poles followed at the end by a
global judgment on the results.
Studying the results for PMSMs with 10
poles, the largest values of CT in
decreasing order are obtained for Z {15,
30, 45, 12}. We also notice that the largest
values of C1 and the smallest values of C2
coefficients
are
obtained
for
Z {30, 15, 45}. The smallest values of CT
(that correspond to the smallest values of C1
and largest values of C2) marked by grey
color in the table are obtained for Z {18,
21, 24, 27, 33, 36, 39, 42}.
By comparing the values of CT, C1 and
C2, we conclude that, generally, the CT
values increase with the increase of C1
values and with the decrease of C2 values.

21

However, there are evident exceptions to


this rule, for example in case of PMSMs with
Z {15, 30}. This exception is characterized
by the fact that for Z=15, CT is higher than
for Z = 30 (CT = 1.736 versus CT = 0.336),
while the value of C1 is smaller (C1 = 5
versus C1 = 10) and the value of C2 is larger
(C2 = 2 versus C2=1).
We also notice that, for Z {12, 18, 24,
36, 42}, the value of C1 is the same (i.e.
C1 = 2), while the CT values are different
CT {0.105, 0.035, 0.012, 0.014, 0.025}.
In case of PMSMs with 12 poles, the
largest values of CT are obtained for
Z {18, 36}. For these values, C1 reaches
the largest values C1 {6, 12}, while C2 the
smallest ones C2 {2, 1}. However, we
notice that, for Z {15, 21}, the coefficient
C1 has the same value (i.e. C1 = 3), but the
CT values are different CT {0.115, 0.028}.
We also notice that, from CT point of
view, the most suitable numbers of slots for
the PMSMs with 12 poles is Z = 45.
In case of PMSMs with 14 poles, the
largest CT value (2.033 Nm) is obtained for
Z=42 for which C1 is maximum (C1=14) and
C2 is minimum (C2=1). Small values of CT
are obtained for Z {18, 24, 30, 36} and
they correspond to the same values C1 = 2
and C2 = 7.
We notice that, for the same values of C1
(C1 = 2) and C2 (C2 = 7), the CT values are
different.
Based on the results presented above,
we conclude that the recommendations (1)
and (2) should be applied with precaution.
However, we should under-line that these
recommendations are useful to avoid the
PMSMs solutions with large CT peak
values.
In Figure 4, there are presented some
examples of CT variations versus rotor
position for the PMSMs with suitable and
unsuitable combinations (Z, 2p).

a)

ELECTROTEHNIC, ELECTRONIC, AUTOMATIC, vol. 61, Nr. 1, ianuarie-martie 2013

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Table 2. Numerical results of Frad versus no. of


slots Z

2p

Z
12
15
18
21
24
27
30
33
36
39
42
45
18
27
36
45
12
18
24
30
36
42

10
b)
Figure 4. Examples of CT oscillations: a) 2p = 10 and Z =
33; b) 2p = 14 and Z = 42.

In Figure 4a), it is shown the result for


2p = 10 and Z = 33, for which its maximum
amplitude is less than 4 mNm (less than 0.2
% of rated torque).
In Figure 4b), it is presented the result for
2p = 14 and Z = 42 that correspond to the
maximum amplitude of the CT (2.033 Nm).

12

14

4. Numerical evaluation of URF for a


series of PMSMs
Another aspect studied in the paper is
related to the URF that acting on the
machine shaft may generate mechanical
and acoustic vibrations and premature
damage of PMSMs bearings.
The URF is computed using the Maxwell
Stress Tensor method [20]:
Frad =

L sc
20

(B

2
n

B 2t dl

(2)

In (2), Frad is the URF acting on the


machine shaft, Lsc is the length of stator
core, 0 is the magnetic permeability of
vacuum, Bn and Bt are the normal and
tangential component of magnetic flux
density on the circular path placed in the
middle of the airgap.
Since the tangential component Bt of the
magnetic flux density is small in comparison
to its normal component Bn, Bt2 component
in (2) will be neglected. Thus we can rewrite
(2) as follows:
Frad

L sc
20

B n2 dl

By analyzing the above results, we notice


that, in case of PMSMs with 10 poles, the
largest Frad values are obtained for Z {15,
45} and in case of PMSMs with 12 poles for
Z {18, 27, 45}.
The smallest URF values are obtained in
case of PMSMs with 10 poles for Z {12,
18, 24, 30, 36, 42}, in case of PMSMs with
12 poles for Z = 36, and in case of PMSMs
with 14 poles for any studied Z number.
By taking into account the numerical
results presented above, we state that the
most suitable combinations (Z, 2p) for
PMSMs from both CT and URF point of
view are those shown in Table 3.
Table 3. Best combinations (Z, 2p) characterized by small
URF and CT

2p
10

(3)

The Bn component of the magnetic flux


density is computed by exploiting the
magnetic field solution on a circular path
placed in the middle of the machine airgap
for each rotor-stator position. These values
are then processed using an Excel program,
and the final URF results are shown in
Table 2.

Frad
0.082
50.82
0.074
0.168
0.091
0.255
0.067
0.222
0.080
0.213
0.031
5.929
3.089
3.094
0.067
1.588
0.080
0.053
0.061
0.060
0.066
0.062

14

Z
18
24
36
42
18
24
30
36

CT
0.035
0.012
0.014
0.025
0.030
0.027
0.019
0.053

Frad
0.074
0.091
0.080
0.031
0.053
0.061
0.060
0.066

In Figure 5, there are presented two


examples of variation of Frad versus rotor
angle.

ELECTROTEHNIC, ELECTRONIC, AUTOMATIC, vol. 61, nr. 1, ianuarie-martie 2013

23

7. References

a)

b)
Figure 5. Radial force versus rotor angle for 2p = 14, Z =
24 and 2p = 12, Z = 27.

5. Conclusions
The numerical analysis carried out in this
paper deals with the FE based numerical
analysis of a series of PMSMs with 10, 12
and 14 poles with the purpose to identify the
most suitable combinations (Z, 2p) that offer
the smallest CT and URF.
According to this study, we proved that
some recommendations related to CT
minimization, existing in literature, should be
used with precaution and rather to avoid
unfavorable PMSM structures characterized
by high CT.
By a series of FE simulations we
identified a list of (Z, 2p) combinations that
characterize PMSM configurations with
small CT and URF.
This study is useful for the design
engineers involved in optimal design of
PMSMs.
6. Acknowledgment
The work has been co-funded by the Sectorial
Operational Programme Human Resources
Development 2007-2013 of the Romanian
Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Protection
through
the
Financial
Agreement
POSDRU/89/1.5/S/62557.

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8. Biography
Tiberiu TUDORACHE was
born in Ploiesti (Romania), on
September 5, 1971.
He
graduated
from
the
Universitatea Politehnica din
Bucureti, Faculty of Electrical
Engineering, Romania, in 1995.He received
the M.S. and PhD degree in electrical
engineering from the Universitatea Politehnica
din
Bucureti,
Faculty
of
Electrical
Engineering, Romania, in 1996 and 2001
respectively. He is Associate Professor at the
same university (Romania). His research
interests include numerical modeling and
optimization of electrical machines, renewable
energy systems and electro-technologies.
Daniel Bogdan DUMITRU was
born in Babadag (Romania), on
October 28, 1986.
He
graduated
from
the
Universitatea Politehnica din
Bucureti, Faculty of Electrical
Engineering, Romania, in 2010.
He is engineer at ICPE Bucureti. His
research interests include numerical modeling
and production of small power electrical
machines.
Mircea MODREANU was born
in 1955 in Romania. He
graduated
from
the
Universitatea Politehnica din
Bucureti, Faculty of Electrical
Engineering, Romania, in 1980.
In 1999 he received the PhD
degree in Electrical Engineering from the
Universitatea Politehnica din Bucureti. He
continually worked as scientific researcher
with ICPE Bucureti. His activity is focused on
the research, development, execution and
testing of special low power electric machines.