Lucid lays out why its motors are more power-dense and easier to build than those from Tesla


    Lucid Motors calls its motor design miniaturized, and it’s lengthy boasted that the sunshine and “impossibly compact” motor in its Air electrical sedan is lean sufficient to suit into an airplane carry-on. 

    Lean and small is just one side, nevertheless. Lucid’s motors weigh simply 67 kilos every and are able to producing 670 hp—sure, that’s 10 hp per pound. 

    2022 Lucid Air

    2022 Lucid Air

    Additional, Lucid’s silicon carbide inverter, discount gearset, and differential, packaged collectively, weigh about 163 kilos.

    It is vitally, very power-dense. And in a tech discuss launched by the corporate on Tuesday, Lucid CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson and Powertrain VP Emad Dlala ran by the priorities the motors have been designed round, and the way energy and effectivity, by low resistance and thermal administration, have been a part of the plan from the beginning—together with ease of producing. 

    You’ll need to watch the complete presentation—greater than an hour—for the physics lesson inside, and also you’re certain to be taught so much not nearly this unit however motors basically. However these 4 slides, evaluating Lucid’s motor to motors from Tesla and Porsche, get to the gist of it.

    Lucid weight of stator and rotor compared

    Lucid weight of stator and rotor in contrast

    Lucid motor weight compared

    Lucid motor weight in contrast

    Lucid power density compared

    Lucid energy density in contrast

    Lucid power and motor weight compared

    Lucid energy and motor weight in contrast

    Rawlinson notes that the venture included going again to the physics and looking out on the complete powertrain as a single holistic inertial system. 

    The 2 spend a lot time discussing the design of the stator, the static outer portion of the motor that, with the present formed by the inverter, creates the magnetic discipline that rotates the rotor within the center. 

    As an example, the stator for Lucid’s six-pole permanent-magnet synchronous motor doesn’t use copper-wire windings like many such motors, and it doesn’t use hairpins both. As a substitute, for decrease energy losses plus ease of meeting, Lucid appears to a continuous-winding meeting that wraps into the stator with a restricted variety of welds. It’s made with a CNC-controlled machine and a course of that resembles weaving. Then a CNC-controlled mandrel helps align and insert the woven mesh. 

    The pair even poke a little bit enjoyable on the workaround that Tesla resorted to in its motors for the Plaid—a carbon-fiber shell that Rawlinson notes is identical form of know-how utilized in hydrogen storage for gasoline cells, to carry large stress in. To scale that to excessive quantity goes to be very costly, Dlala speculates. 

    Lucid additionally cools its motor otherwise than Tesla, Porsche, or some other designs we’re conscious of. Lucid’s technique extracts no matter warmth it may well super-close to the slots relatively ready till the warmth reaches outward. A center channel within the stator capabilities as a manifold, operating ATF (computerized transmission fluid) by slim channels, serving to extract warmth by that mesh. 

    The busbars connecting the motor to the inverter are additionally the shortest potential, to cut back resistance (and thus warmth). It’s a bonus of the motor because it was designed in a single unit with the inverter. 

    Lucid's Rawlinson and Dlala presenting drive unit

    Lucid’s Rawlinson and Dlala presenting drive unit

    Backside line: Lucid emphasizes that its drive models are gentle, compact, environment friendly, power-dense, and could be scaled up. 

    Though Lucid doesn’t really lay out an effectivity evaluation of the motor unit versus the unit from the Taycan and Mannequin S Plaid, it implies based mostly on the entire presentation that its motors additionally make an enormous contribution to effectivity—a lot that, on the finish, 

    To that time, Rawlinson ventures that the motor itself weighs so little—simply 11% of the general battery-pack mass—that if they will obtain that achieve in effectivity from the unit’s design it’s primarily a “zero mass drive unit.”

    Which may be the purpose to assist allow a bonus for Lucid sooner or later, because it produces EVs that go farther with smaller battery packs and, maybe, a scaled-down model of this unit. 


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