How Do You Calculate Motor Size for a Small Electric Vehicle Project?

In summary, Jack is looking for advice on how to calculate the power needed for his vehicle and is unsure if it is worth going for a 0.3N*m motor.
  • #1
Jogilvie95
4
1
Hello all,

I have a project in which i need to design a small vehicle which is able to carry 4kg for 10 meters. I have took it up to 5kg as the frame and wheels add up too 1kg. So the total weight will be 5kg.

Acceleration isn't a priority, but 0.5 m/s I would be fine with.

The wheel have a diameter of 6cm, they are made of rubber and they do have tread, it will go along a smooth surface.

I can only use electric motors, I was planning on using 2 motors attached to the 2 front wheels. I only have a budget of under £100 to cover the motors and battery to power the motors.

I am unsure on how to calculate what size motors i need and the power supply. Would anyone be able to help me with the equations that I need to use to calculate this please?

Thank you for reading and i appreciate any help! :)

Jack
 
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  • #2
Are you moving it horizontally? No up or down ramp? If so, and if acceleration is not important, then the power need depends only on friction. You can not easily calculate friction.

Why two motors rather than one?
 
  • #3
Only horizontally,

The vehicle will have to travel in a straight line, I was thinking if I use one motor on a single wheel it would make this harder to keep straight.
 
  • #4
Welcome to the PF.
Jogilvie95 said:
Acceleration isn't a priority, but 0.5 m/s I would be fine with.
0.5 m/s is a velocity. An acceleration would have units of m/s^2.
Jogilvie95 said:
The vehicle will have to travel in a straight line, I was thinking if I use one motor on a single wheel it would make this harder to keep straight.
Steering by only adjusting wheel drive and not wheel angle can be pretty problematic. I'd suggest just starting with something like a simple battery-powered radio-controlled (R/C) car, and implement the pieces yourself as the project...

https://sc01.alicdn.com/kf/UT8PYDTX74bXXagOFbX0/3709/UT8PYDTX74bXXagOFbX0.jpg

UT8PYDTX74bXXagOFbX0.jpg
 

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  • #5
To just move (without specified speed), motor with 0.1-0.2 N*m torque may be enough. This is typically 20-40 mm diameter motors without reduction gears.
Smaller motors are also ok, but they will need speed reduction gear.
 
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  • #6
trurle said:
To just move (without specified speed), motor with 0.1-0.2 N*m torque may be enough. This is typically 20-40 mm diameter motors without reduction gears.
Smaller motors are also ok, but they will need speed reduction gear.

Thank you, are you aware of any equations to use to calculate this?
 
  • #7
trurle said:
To just move (without specified speed), motor with 0.1-0.2 N*m torque may be enough. This is typically 20-40 mm diameter motors without reduction gears.
Smaller motors are also ok, but they will need speed reduction gear.

Do you think it’s worth going for 0.3N*m motor just to be sure?
 
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  • #8
Jogilvie95 said:
Thank you, are you aware of any equations to use to calculate this?
Tmin=M(vehicle)*g*R(wheel)*Kf=5*9.8*0.03*0.1=0.147 N*m
Total friction factor Kf through transmission is 0.03-0.1 for wheeled vehicles (0.05 is typical).
 
  • #9
If you really want to you can build the little car and then put something on the vehicle to simulate the weight of the battery pack and motor. You can then attach a little Newton scale to the car and see how much force it takes to pull it horisontally. You then calculate the torque directly T=Force x 0.03, because the wheel with the drive motor will have to supply the force that you just measured. Very few people have a Newton scale lying around so it might not be possible for you to do this...The force might be so low that the Newton scale might not register it...
 

Related to How Do You Calculate Motor Size for a Small Electric Vehicle Project?

1. How do I determine the required motor size for my project?

To calculate the motor size for your project, you will need to consider several factors such as the weight of the load, the desired speed and torque, and the efficiency of the motor. You can use a formula that takes into account these variables to determine the required motor size.

2. Can I use a motor with a higher horsepower than what is calculated?

It is generally recommended to use a motor with a horsepower that is slightly higher than the calculated value to ensure that it can handle unexpected loads and provide sufficient torque. However, using a motor with significantly higher horsepower may result in unnecessary energy consumption and higher costs.

3. How do I account for the motor's duty cycle in the calculation?

The duty cycle of a motor refers to the amount of time it operates at full load compared to the total operating time. To account for this, you can multiply the required horsepower by the duty cycle to determine the actual horsepower needed for your project.

4. What is the importance of considering the motor's efficiency?

The efficiency of a motor refers to its ability to convert electrical energy into mechanical energy. A higher efficiency motor will require less energy to perform the same amount of work, resulting in lower operating costs. It is important to consider the efficiency of a motor when calculating its size to ensure optimal performance and cost-effectiveness.

5. Are there any specific safety factors to consider when calculating motor size?

Yes, it is important to consider safety factors such as overload protection and thermal protection when calculating motor size. These factors ensure that the motor can handle unexpected loads and prevent overheating, which can lead to damage or failure. It is recommended to consult with a professional or refer to safety standards when determining the appropriate safety factors for your project.

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