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A new generation of electric motors that provides higher power density and safety features by a novel winding architecture

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - EMphiTech (A new generation of electric motors that provides higher power density and safety features by a novel winding architecture)

Reporting period: 2019-04-01 to 2019-10-31

The electric mobility industry (also known as eMobility industry) needs to overcome various challenges to obtain the maximum efficiency, reduce the weight and cost of components, and solve the limitations of autonomy and problems with the charging infrastructure.
As the industry is massively adopting the electrical motors as a clean and reliable system for torque generation, a major need arises to maximize the use of the energy storage in its battery while reducing their size and/or extend their autonomy. The eMobility industry looks for solutions to obtain the maximum possible efficiency while reducing materials and waste to minimum because of its high numbers of production. The latest technology in electronics hardware and software, materials, topologies and architectures have enabled precise control of the electricity usage and conversion to several industries. Unfortunately, as a result, these solutions have become expensive and complex. Despite the advances in the field, the power expectations that the industry demands have not yet been achieved. There are also specific needs for the implementation of the new electric motor solutions in applications (like small aircraft or drones) that require the special redundancy feature to keep running safely even in partial failure conditions. This need is not met in today’s electric motors. This discrepancy between the market-industry needs and the available technology has presented a business opportunity to EMphiTek.
The main goal of the Ph1 execution is to determine the viability of our project from a technical, economical, and market-oriented point of view. The objectives have been: Technological feasibility study; Market assessment; Business model assessment; Commercialization and financial plan; IP assessment; Work Plan - Phase II; Innovation Business Plan
As a conclusion, the feasibility activities clearly demonstrate that: i) we have a high innovation for the eMobility Market; ii) there is a huge potential market worldwide; iii) EmphiTek has the expertise, technology, channels, and a business model validated by potential customers that will allow us to reach our commercial goals (€14.1 million turnover in 2025); iv) there are high market barriers for existing; and v) EmphiTek can be commercialised at the target price as it is aligned with the actual sector demands.
A feasibility study has been carried out during Phase 1 project in order to determine the viability of our project from a technical, economical, and market-oriented point of view.
Within the technical feasibility study we have developed and tested a prototype of the motor-driver using EMphiTek technology. We have analysed the results and we have translated them into technical developments needed for EMphiTek to meet the requirements of clients, users and technical performance standards. We have defined the technical developments in our Work Plan for the next 24 months that include the development of EMphiTek technology in synchronous AC motors with permanent magnet technology and in DC brushless motors.
We have also evaluated the market of the electric motor at a global scale, including the analysis of market forces, market trends, competition and market entry obstacles. Our primary research consisted on conducting interviews with a wide range of stakeholders to validate our initial hypothesis. We have also analysed the main market trends of electric motors by application, motor type and geographical region. Besides, we have analysed our two main competitor groups: electric motors manufacturers for electrical vehicles and electric motors manufacturers for drones.
We have analysed our business model and, as a result of the execution of Phase 1, we have concluded that the best strategy is to 1) focus on B2B sales of the electric motors in the short and mid-term. We have conceived a long term business model focused on achieving a joint venture with an electric motor manufacturer. We have also designed clear Business Model Canvas.
Regarding IPR, we have conducted an analysis of the applicable directives/guidelines that EMphiTek technology has to comply. We have started to work with IP attorney VolartPons for trademark registration. As a result of the preliminary study, no identical trademarks can be considered similar. During the execution of Phase 1, we have continued our PCT claim resolution to definitely protect our patent at national level (EU, US, China and Korea). Together with our IP attorney, we have also carried out a Freedom to Operate (FTO) study for the markets in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, France, Spain, the UK, the US, Japan, and China. Even though some patents have been identified with similar characteristics or close to those of EMphiTek technology, the FTO concludes that our technology does not incur in any relevant patent infringement.
Within the execution of the Phase 1, we have also developed our commercialization and financial plan with a clear go-to-market strategy. We will rely on our own sales force in Spain, France, Germany, Italy, the UK and Switzerland, combined with distributors in the rest of Europe and especially in Asia and North America. We plan first expand our solution in Europe by 2023. By 2024 we expect to enter in Asian market and by 2025 the USA market.
Finally, we have defined a detailed work plan (and respective contingency measures) to be further implemented (expectedly) in the EIC Accelerator Pilot Project.
To produce electric motors increasingly more efficient, existing state-of-the-art technologies intend to increase the power density of the motor, enabling to cut material costs and thus the final cost of the motor. These technologies also maximise the ratio of battery/power source use of energy. However, this approach presents a major limitation: power supply voltage and motor generated voltage cannot be equal to avoid damaging the electric motor with an excess of electric current flow passing through it. A number of alternative solutions are growingly being used. A few of them use a booster converter to increment the voltage of the power supply, however this approach is usually more expensive and require the use of complex components. Furthermore, energy usage efficiency is hardly optimal since the booster converter leads to important energy losses, dragging down the efficiency of the whole system.
EMphiTek has been developed to solve the limitations of the state-of-the-art technologies. EMphiTek solution is able to provide a new motor’s winding arrangement allowing for a much more versatile management of the electric motor sub-components. With EMphiTek, new electric motors are fed directly by the batteries with no need for additional components to adjust the supplied electric current. EMphiTek added value stands out in the fact that it relies on: a cost-effective solution, since it makes use of less material to produce equal power outputs; it is a safer and more efficient system able to produce equal power outputs without using booster converters or any additional material.
Electric motor manufacturers will have access, for the first time, to an affordable solution to increase the efficiency of their motors. Society in general will benefit from the adoption of a greener technology able to optimise energy efficiency and cut down GHG emissions.
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