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Optimization of Water Cooling for High Power Density Electrical Machines

  • The power density of electric machines is a critical factor in various applications, i.e. like the power train. A major factor to improve the power density is boosting the electric current density, which increases the losses in the limited volume of the electric machine. This results in a need for an optimized thermal design and efficient cooling. The dissipation of heat can be achieved in a multitude of ways, ranging from air cooling to highly integrated cooling solutions. In this paper, this variety is shown and analyzed with a focus on water cooling. Further various structures in electric machines are presented. A planar testbench is built to systematically analyze water cooling geometries. The focus lies in providing different power loss distributions along cooling channels, accurate temperature readings in a multitude of locations, as well as the pressure drop across the channel. The test bench results are aligned with simulations and simplified analytical evaluation to support the development process. The main goal in this paper is to determine temperature gradients in the material close to the stator to quantize the potential for future cooling jacket designs. One question ,to answer is: How large the gradient is considering a realistic power loss distribution. Another sensible point are the different thermal expansions of aluminum used in cooling jackets and the steel core of the stator. This can be bypassed by using a steel cooling jacket. In this case, the performance of a steel cooling jacket compared to an aluminum version is investigated and also if light weight construction can compensate the lower thermal conductivity of steel. After the analysis, an outlook about future changes of the measurement methods are given and first potentials for future cooling jackets are proposed.

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Author:Christoph Ellenrieder, Benedikt Reick, Marcus Geimer
Parent Title (English):SAE Technical Paper
Publisher:SAE International
Place of publication:Warrendale, Pennsylvania, United States
Document Type:Conference Proceeding
Date of Publication (online):2024/04/03
Date of first Publication:2023/09/16
Creating Corporation:SAE International and SAE Naples Section
Release Date:2024/04/09
Tag:Cooling; Electrical Machine; thermal optimization
Page Number:9
First Page:1
Last Page:9
Institutes:Hochschule Ravensburg-Weingarten
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - CC BY - Namensnennung 4.0 International