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We present a comprehensive analysis of iron losses in an inverter-fed induction motor. We performed experimental and numerical investigations to assess the additional losses produced by a pulsewidth modulated (PWM) supply compared to a sinusoidal supply. We developed an iron-loss model, called the hybrid model, and incorporated it into a two-dimensional (2-D) finite-element method (FEM) to investigate the losses. The model predicts the B-H loops and the ensuing iron losses. We also used a traditional iron-loss model based on the statistical theory for the sake of comparison. We solved the nonlinear dynamic equations of the FEM by the fixed-point method and the Crank-Nicolson time-stepping scheme. We found the hybrid model to be fairly accurate in reproducing the iron losses obtained experimentally on a squirrel-cage induction motor operated under several different conditions. The numerical analysis also provided interesting results regarding the role of the PWM supply in characterizing the behavior and distribution of iron losses in the geometry of the motor.
Date of Publication: Sept. 2009