Types of Motors

How Motors Work

History of Motors

Types of Motors

Frequently asked Questions


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Types of Motors

Electric motors are practically used everywhere round us. Starting with your kitchen fan, microwave oven, refrigerator, vacuum cleaners, hair dryers to car heaters and radiators, everything uses a motor. Following are the main types of motors,

AC Motor

There are two main types of AC motors. The most popular and simple motor is the three-phase AC induction motor. It is also known as the squirrel cage motor. The synchronous motor rotates at exactly the supply frequency or submultiples of the supply frequency. A typical AC motor consists of two parts:

  • An exterior stationary stator with coils that uses AC current to produce a revolving magnetic field
  • An interior rotor linked to the output shaft that employs torque using the rotating field

Stepper Motors

Stepper motor is an electro-mechanical device that converts electrical current into torque output. It popularly finds application as a positioning device for precision control. The motor works by converting electrical impulses into distinct mechanical rotatory motion. Normally this motion of a stepper motor is measured in degrees, or in steps.

DC Motor

While an electric motor converts electrical energy into mechanical force, the reverse if true for DC motor. DC motors convert mechanical force into electrical energy with the use of a generator or dynamo. DC motors can be primarily divided into Brushed DC motors and Brushless DC motors

Brushed DC motors

The brushed DC motor has an ancient history. In this type of motor, a permanent magnetic field is produced in the stator with the help of permanent magnets or electro-magnetic windings. If the field is created by permanent magnets, the motor is called a permanent magnet DC motor. If it is generated using electromagnetic windings, the motor is named as Shunt wound DC motor.

Brushless DC motor

A brushless DC motor is an electric motor with similar operations as the DC motor. The only difference is that the role of rotor and stator are inverted in the brushless DC motor. The motor’s rotor has a set of permanent magnets while the stator here consists of electromagnets. As the name suggests, the motor does not use brushes, but the function of commutator takes place by an electronic circuit. It switches the current to various stator coils as and when required.

Linear Motor

A linear motor is essentially an electric motor with an unrolled stator. It results in the Linear motor producing linear force along its length instead of conventional torque as in other motors.

Servo motor

Servo is a tiny motor with specific function. This motor can select between vertical or horizontal polarization. Popularly used for motion controls in electronic gadgets and robots and computer hard disc drives, the motor works more like an alternator. It uses special circuit to make them rotate electrically. Some servomotors are used in reverse to generate AC current.


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