AB Elektronik: Rotor Position Sensor for Electric Motors

Inductive SPINpad Rotor Position Sensor from AB Elektronik optimizes the efficiency of electric motors

It’s a highly topical issue: alternative drive concepts and further reduced fleet emission limits (limit value 2020: 95g CO2/km) require solutions. Here, the electric motor is considered to be the alternative with the highest short term efficiency in powertrain optimization.

Designed-in solutions: the SPINpad sensor offers high immunity to interference, and cost advantages through a simplified design

Achieving high efficiency from an electric motor requires precise control, and the lower the specific energy consumption, the greater the range of the vehicle. A fundamental control variable for motor control in this context is the rotor position within the electric motor.

AB Elektronik’s rotor position sensor is a further evolution of AUTOPAD inductive technology – with many million products in the field.

The inductive system is characterized by an immunity to low frequency magnetic fields up to 150kHz. The circuit board based design of the coil structures, and the resonant operation, allow several sensor systems to be located in a very small space. These are designed to meet functional safety requirements (ISO 26262) up to a maximum level of ASIL D. Many years’ experience in inductive technology has enabled a simple product design, ideal for highly automated production. The associated cost advantages make the system more attractive than comparable solutions.

Made for the future: Forward thinking in the design of the rotor position sensor supports self-diagnostic functions, and paves the way for use in autonomous vehicles

This is novel in the field of rotor position sensors, as existing technologies (e.g. VR resolvers) are purely mechanical/passive sensors without self-diagnostic functions. This can lead to control software problems in the growth phase of autonomous driving, as such sensors cannot be adequately secured against potential errors.

Depending on the application requirements, the SPINpad sensor can be designed as a 360° system. Alternatively, to simplify installation and for large diameters, a circular segment design can be adopted. Depending on the design of the vehicle, the system can be mounted on the shaft (‘through-shaft’), or on the end of the shaft.

In combination with AB Elektronik’s innovative direct injection moulding technology, a SPINpad rotor position sensor is robust against even the most demanding requirements in the customer application – for example, continuous operation at 150°C in transmission oil.

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