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Differentiating Between AC and DC Electric Motors for Industrial Applications

AC and DC electric motors are used to provide requisite power supply to different industrial applications. While it is true that DC motors were developed from AC motors, there are significant differences between them. These differences can impact the performance of an application equipment. Hence, industrial customers need to understand the differences between these two motors, before choosing one for an application.

Understanding AC DC Electric Motors Differences

Here, we will look at each motor separately to understand various aspects like design, base current, and function.

  • AC Motors: These utilize Alternating Currents (AC) to create mechanical energy from electrical energy. The design of any type of AC motor is the same. They comprise a stator, and a rotor. The stator produces the magnetic field, while the rotor rotates due to the magnetic field’s induction. When choosing an AC motor, you need to keep two important features in mind – the running speed (RPMS), and the starting torque.
  • DC Motors: DC electric motors are mechanically commutated machines. They utilize Direct Currents (DC), and comprise a rotating armature winding, and a permanent magnet, which acts as a static field. These motors use static field and armature winding connections to produce different speed and torque levels. Unlike AC motors, the speed of DC motors can be controlled by changing the voltage applied to the armature, or by adjusting the static field current.

AC Motors v/s DC Motors

Now that we have looked at both electric motors separately, the differences that we have provided in the points below will be easier to understand.

  • AC motors rely on alternating currents, while DC motors utilize direct currents.
  • DC motors receive power from cells or batteries, which provide constant voltage, enabling the flow of electrons in a single direction. AC motors get power from AC generators, causing the electrons to change their flow directions.
  • The stable energy flow of DC motors makes them ideal for applications requiring stable speeds, torques, and operations. AC motors, with their continuous energy changes, are ideal for industrial and residential applications.
  • AC motors are preferred for compressor power drives, air conditioning compressors, and hydraulic, and irrigation pumps. DC motors are preferred for steel mill rolling equipment, and paper machines.

After looking at the above points, you will realize that the power sources, and level of power control are the key factors that customers need to consider for AC and DC motors. When choosing a motor, it is always advisable to speak to an expert engineering organization. They can take the details of your application, and suggest the right type of AC and DC electric motor repairing solution for your requirements.