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Design and Comparison of an Optimized Permanent Magnet-Assisted Synchronous Reluctance Motor (PMa-SynRM) with an Induction Motor with Identical NEMA Frame Stators

Robert Vartanian

IEEE,Student Member

Hamid A. Toliyat

IEEE, Fellow

Advanced Electric Machine and Power Electronics Laboratory Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Texas A&M University College Station, Texas 77843-3128 E-mail: Phone: (979) 862-3034 Fax: (979) 845-6259

Abstract—The performance of a synchronous reluctance motor (SynRM) depends on the direct axis inductance (L d ) and the quadrature axis inductance (L q ) of the machine. To achieve high torque density and power factor, increasing the saliency ratio L d /L q and making the difference of these inductances (L d -L q ) large enough are well known methods. Otherwise, the performance of the motor will remain below that of a similar induction machine using similar stator. By placing a proper amount of permanent magnets inside of the rotor in proper position it will be possible to achieve a significant improvement in performance of this permanent magnet assisted SynRM (PMa- SynRM) which will be comparable with induction machines with same stators. This PMa-SynRM will have benefit of reduced price due to use of conventional induction machines stators. This study investigates the characteristic of an optimized PMa-SynRM rotor for a specific 36-slot NEMA-Frame stator used in 7.5 HP induction motor and the paper presents the comparison results between the PMa-SynRM, SynRM, and the induction motor obtained from FEM analysis.

Keywords: PMa-SynRM, Induction Motor, SynRM, NEMA-Frame.



One of the U.S. Navy’s primary principles for future ships and submarines is to become electric, where electric technologies will replace hydraulic and pneumatic fluid power systems that are currently supporting operating equipment. A major component needed for both existing vessels and future electric ships and submarines is the electric motor and generator. The requirement for the development of inexpensive, flexible and reliable motor and generator systems has expanded in the last few years, due to growth in the electrification of ships, automobiles, etc. The development of a universal design of stators laminations which can be used across various motors and generators is a way to reduce the cost of manufacturing and maintenance. In addition, using the SynRM will decrease the cost of the machine but in order to achieve a wide constant-power and a high power-factor

operation in this machine required.

drive, a large saliency ratio is

Achieving such design using lumped parameter model of the motor is very difficult. A large saliency ratio can be achieved by both axially and transversally laminated rotor structures. An axially laminated rotor can present a high- anisotropy and provide a very high unsaturated saliency ratio. However, from the mechanical stress point of view, this rotor has some drawbacks over the transversally laminated one. The effective saliency ratio of transversally laminated rotors can be enhanced by proper placement, proper shape and proper number of the flux barriers.

Adding the proper quantity of permanent magnets into the SynRM rotor core is another way to improve the operating performance of this machine. In this case, the motor is similar to an interior permanent magnet (IPM) machine. However, the amount of permanent magnets used and the permanent magnet flux-linkages are smaller with respect to the conventional IPM. Thus, the proposed motor can be called a permanent magnet assisted synchronous reluctance motor (PMa-SynRM) [1,2,3].

In this paper, an optimized PMa-SynRM based on the same frame as a specific NEMA frame induction motor is designed. Its design and performance characteristics are compared with the specific NEMA frame induction motor which was used for the design and conclusions are made.



One of the initial steps to design a universal stator proper for both induction machine and SynRM is the investigation of the NEMA frame laminations being used in induction motors in the market. The performance characteristics of the induction machine is obtained and the operating conditions such as the line voltage and winding current will be available for designing the rotor of the PMa-SynRM. The benefit of this method will be the existence of a reference machine for comparison with

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Figure 2. 3-D Model of PMa-SynRM Rotor Optimized for the Study. TABLE II. D ATA OF

Figure 2.

3-D Model of PMa-SynRM Rotor Optimized for the Study.



PM type


Mag. Retentivity (Br) (tesla)


Relative Permeability


Mag. Coercivity (Hc) (kA/m)


Magnetization (Mp) (kA/m)


Mass Density(kg/m^3)




Figure 2. 3-D Model of PMa-SynRM Rotor Optimized for the Study. TABLE II. D ATA OF

Figure 3.

Flux linkage of the SynRM (Phase A).

Figure 2. 3-D Model of PMa-SynRM Rotor Optimized for the Study. TABLE II. D ATA OF

Figure 4.

Flux linkage of the PMaSynRM Due to the Stator Excitation.

It is obvious that the saliency ratio is not too high for SynRM because the rotor geometry has been improved by using permanent magnets. The ratio of maximum and minimum of the waveform in Fig. 4 is about 5.4 which shows a significant improvement of the saliency ratio of SynRM using permanent magnets. Also, it is interesting to see that the maximum of the flux linkage waveform in Fig. 4 is less than

the maximum of the waveform in Fig. 3. Fig. 5 and Fig. 6 show

the flux line distribution for the maximum torque angle. In SynRM, the flux lines are more and the density is higher in some teeth whereas they are reduced in PMa-SynRM. As a

result, less core loss is expected in comparison with the


The d-axis flux linkage drop in PMa-SynRM is due to saturation in the stator teeth and rotor ribs. This is caused by the permanent magnets. Table III compares the saliency ratio of SynRM and PMa-SynRM and the improvement obtained using the permanent magnets.




Saliency Ratio





Saliency Ratio Increment