26 Dec '15, 3pm

Motor City

The AC electricity driving the motor powers the stator (the stationary windings around the spinning rotor) and creates a rotating magnetic field. Tesla’s original motors used 3 “phases” of AC to drive the motor: 3 wires to the motor, each with the same frequency AC, but at a different phase. (Sorry – I can’t think of an easy way to explain this!) Lower-power motors today use a single phase, which (annoyingly) use two wires. Motor engineers coined a concept called “slip,” which is the difference in rotational speed between this rotating field and the rotational speed of the rotor. The torque of the motor is proportional to the slip. So – if you want a certain amount of torque from an AC motor, you measure the speed of its rotor, and adjust the AC frequency to cause the magnetic field to rotate the right amount faster than the rotor (or slower for regen braking). An AC induc...

Full article: https://www.teslamotors.com/blog/motor-city

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