Tesla has unveiled Model S Plaid, which features several eye-popping innovations, including a magnet motor with carbon wrapping. Now the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has published a new Tesla patent, “Permanent magnet motor with wrapping.”
In early June, at the ceremony of delivering the first Model S Plaid to owners, the company's CEO Elon Musk presented the main technical elements of the car. While some impressive changes were already known, the details of the innovative engine contained some very interesting news.
Before this, in March 2021 the “Permanent magnet motor with wrapping” patent was filed by Tesla and published in November 2021. Although various materials are indicated as wrapping in the patent, special emphasis is placed on carbon wrapping. This is what indicates that the patent describes the motor that is used in Model S Plaid.
FIG. 3 illustrates a perspective view of the components of a rotor contained within a rotor sleeve, according to certain embodiments of the present disclosure.
The new electric motor that is used in Model S Plaid is the first of its kind to be in production and features carbon sleeve rotors. In order to get the carbon wrapped over the rotor, there are some very tough obstacles to overcome. Musk explained that carbon and copper have different rates of thermal expansion, and in order to achieve the desired result, the rotor must be wrapped at an extremely high intensity—a very difficult feat.
“As far as we know, this is the first time there has been a production electric motor with a carbon-coated rotor. This is an extremely difficult thing, because carbon and copper have very different rates of thermal expansion. To have a carbon-coated rotor, you need to wrap it with extremely high intensity and this is extremely difficult to do.”
In order to make such rotors, Tesla designed a new production machine. The result is a highly efficient small engine that you can even pick up in your hands, but can accelerate a two-ton car to 60 mph in two seconds.
Essentially, the company's engineers have created a motor with an electromagnetic field, which is super efficient and has a tight gap even at super-high revolutions per minute (RPM), and is single-speed from 0 to 200 miles per hour. So, because the RPM for this motor is totally insane, the centrifugal force wants to expand the rotor—but it is the carbon overlap that holds it all together.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.