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AC car

  1. Jul 10, 2007 #1
    im a mechanical engineering student, and we are building an electric using a 3 phase 40 hp AC motor, which is oil cooled. The motor must be submerged in oil that is then circulated... the motor will produce up to 8000W-10000W of heat. does anyone know if it would be possible to use the existing radiator as the heat exchanger or would an engine oil cooler be required. Also due to limited power availible could the fluid circulate by thermsyphon
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 10, 2007 #2


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    Welcome to PF, D Oliph.
    I suppose that it would depend primarily upon the consistency of the oil. A radiator made for water/glycol might have too much restriction in the passages for decent flow. Automatic transmission or engine oil coolers should work, but you might need more than one to dissipate enough heat.
    This might be irrelevant, but is the system to be pressurized the way an engine coolant system is? If so, I don't think that oil or tranny coolers will handle it.

    edit: Oops... I missed your last question until now. I'm pretty sure that you'll need a pump. You'll also have to match your oil lines to the radiator inlet and outlet ports, which will require a bit of brazing (unless you have huge lines all the way).
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2007
  4. Jul 10, 2007 #3


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    Every oil cooled generator I have ever seen has had a pressurized system. If you look through the numbers I think you'll see that you'll need a pump to get the flow required.

    The passages in a radiator are pretty small. You would have to experiment with what kind of pressure drop you'll introduce by using it. Mechanically there's no real reason why you can't use it.
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