Software for Education and Industry


How 3 Phase Induction Motors Work

Three phase induction motors are the workhorse of industry.  It has been estimated that 70% to 80% of all electricity in the world is consumed by these motors.  They are truly elegant machines in that there are no moving parts except the rotor, and there are no brushes, commutators, or slip rings to wear out.

This computer program explains How 3 Phase Induction Motors Work in 10 interactive screens of text, graphics, animation, and audio tracks.  The first 5 screens explain the basic physics of permanent magnets, Faraday's Law, Oersted's Discovery, and electromagnets.  Computer animation allows you to "see" magnetic fields that are otherwise invisible.  The next 5 screens explain how a rotating magnetic field is produced on the stator of a motor, how the motor's synchronous speed is determined, how the rotor is constructed and what it does, how torque is produced on the rotor, and why the rotor can never turn at the same speed as the field on the stator.

All screens include an audio track explaining the principles described on that screen.

The program is recommended for electricians, technicians, engineers, and anyone else interested in how 3 phase induction motors work.

Some knowledge of electrical current flow is assumed, and a familiarity of 3 phase power is helpful but not required.


 Example screen showing how synchronous speed is determined.



Example screen explaining the operation of the rotor.


                                                                                                                                       Example screen showing an operable motor.


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