University of Adelaide (Australia) researchers are using new magnetic materials to develop revolutionary electrical motors and generators that promise significant energy savings. They have used the new motors to develop patented highly efficient water pump systems with potential widespread application.

The researchers have used two emerging magnetic materials — called soft magnetic composite (SMC) and amorphous magnetic material (AMM) — and two novel production techniques to form the 'stator' within the electrical motor or generator. The stator is the stationary and magnetic part of a motor surrounding the rotor that turns.

Both new techniques have been successfully developed and tested with small prototypes, showing energy efficiency gains of up to 90% in small motors compared to 60-70% in conventional motors. The new motors are also smaller in size for a given power output. The motors operate at low speed with high power output and with low production costs, suitable for swimming pool and similar pumps.