Saturday, June 3, 2023

Automakers cutting back on rare earth magnets By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Renault Zoe E-Sport concept car is seen during the 87th International Motor Show at Palexpo in Geneva, Switzerland March 8, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

(Reuters) – As tensions mount between China and the United States, automakers in the West are trying to reduce their reliance on a key driver of the electric vehicle revolution – the magnets made with rare earth metals that power electric engines.

Here’s how EVs are powered, and how some automakers are adapting.

What’s the difference?

Permanent magnet motors – using rare earths such as neodymium and dysprosium – naturally have magnetic force. These are at the heart of many electric motors, powering the rotor of the drivetrain.

Motors without permanent magnets, such as induction motors, use electric current, often with wiring, to create a magnetic field and power the motor. These are cheaper, but less efficient and require a larger battery, reducing the driving range.


Japan’s third largest carmaker says it is scrapping rare earth magnets from its new Ariya SUV.

In 2012, Nissan (OTC:) developed an electric motor that required 40% less dysprosium; and in 2016 it extended that reduction.


The world’s biggest EV maker initially used induction motors without rare earth permanent magnets, but in 2017 it released its Model 3 with a permanent magnet motor. In 2019, it redesigned its drive unit for Models S and X to use two motors, one with permanent magnets and one without.


The German brand’s new iX3 SUV model, due this year, will be its first electric vehicle to use a redesigned drivetrain that no longer requires rare earths.


The French automaker, an alliance partner of Nissan, is a pioneer in non-rare earth electric motors. Its small city car Zoe, released in 2012, uses “wound” electric motors with copper wire instead.


Japan’s Toyota has been reducing rare earths in its electric vehicles. It says it is still working on that after developing a magnet that used 20%-50% less neodymium in 2018.


VW is using permanent magnets with less of two rare earths, terbium and dysprosium. In its all-drive electric models, the company has also started using a permanent magnet motor on the rear axle and one without magnets on the front axle.


The German carmaker has reduced rare earths in its Mercedes Benz electric vehicles and told Reuters it plans to eliminate them in the medium term.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here



Related Stories