Soft Magnetic Materials & the Electrification of Transportation


What's the Best Soft Magnetic Material for Electric Motor Designs?

In recent decades, designs in automotive and other industries have demanded better magnetic materials. A new type of magnetic material used for small motors is filling that gap. Let us introduce to you soft magnetic composites -- the perfect complement to AC electromagnetic designs that need a higher level of performance.

Soft magnetic composites (SMCs) offer 3-D shape-making and other design possibilities that simply didn’t exist before. With the right SMC your technology can:

  • Become more compact & dense
  • Achieve high permeability
  • Use higher frequencies
  • Experience lower core/eddy loss
  • Run faster
  • Consume far less energy

Are you completely in the dark on soft magnetic composites? All brushed up on the basics of electric motor materials but need a little more research? Or somewhere in between? Keep reading to learn what makes SMC so important to electromagnetic components in motor and other applications.

(Are you instead looking for a powder metal material that can be strengthened by sintering it at high temperatures? Click the button below)

Part Strength Is More Important to Me




Fran Hanejko is an industry-leading expert who works with Horizon as our Senior Advanced Materials Engineer. Fran has decades of experience in powder metallurgy, including managing customer applications for a world-leading raw material supplier. He graduated from Drexel University in 1974 with a master’s degree in materials engineering.

Contact Fran with your magnetic material and general powder metallurgy questions by filling out the form on this page. 



Level 2: Intermediate 

Application of High-Performance Materials -- Electromagnetic Products

This paper discusses the use of high-performance materials for D/C applications as well as the use of insulated powders for high- and low-frequency applications. Alloys of iron and silicon are highlighted.

Source: Fran Hanejko, George Ellis, Timothy Hale

Basic Design Considerations & the Standard 35 of Powder Metal Materials

There's one major PM materials resource new and experienced engineers rely on -- the MPIF Standard 35 material guidelines. But the possibilities of powder metallurgy don’t start and end with the Standard 35 -- your design considerations may call for something a little more innovative. The following is everything you need to know about the MPIF’s Standard 35 -- and the advanced materials and processes that lie beyond:

Source: Horizon Technology

New SMCs for Electromagnetic Applications With Improved Mechanical Properties 

The chance to move from 2-D to 3-D design of electrical machines is possible thanks to soft Magnetic composites. These iron-based powders are insulated and pressed to realize shapes otherwise impossible with traditional lamination sheets. This paper presents recent progress in mixing SMC iron powders and phenolic resin, in different weight percentages and mold pressures. The goal? Compromising between magnetic and mechanical qualities.

Source: Luca Ferrarisa, Emir Pošković, & Fausto Franchini

1P? 3P? 5P? What Can These Powder Metal Processes Do For Your Numbers? 

Powder metal does more than you might think -- if you’ve got the right material. Knowing the strengths and subtleties of each material process can make your product stand out in a competitive market. Three emerging material processes you should know about ASAP are the 1P, 3P, and 5P soft magnetic composites. Here’s how each material will bestow certain qualities on your application.

Source: Horizon Technology

This New Generation of Direct-Drive Electric Machines Will Power Our Future 

Manufacturers of wind turbines and electric machines always had to find a balance between using generators with low-weight, low-reliability systems and using heavy, high-efficiency systems. A new generation of motors and generators based on axial flux technology combines the best of both worlds. This blog post describes the difference between axial and radial flux technologies.

Source: Magnax 

COMPONENT SPOTLIGHT: Electrical Lamination + SMC Powder Metal

In many cases, soft magnetic composites aren't a cost-effective or good 1:1 replacement material for steel electrical laminations. But, what if you could marry SMCs with laminations to get an answer where 1 + 1 = 3? Here we unveil something that’s more of an opportunity than a case study of a finished application. But that doesn’t make it any less exciting!

Source:  Horizon Technology