A gear motor is an all-in-one combination of an electric motor and a gearbox. That makes it a simple, cost-effective solution for high-torque, low-speed applications because it combines an electric motor with a gear reducer system. Most importantly, gear motors ensure a well-matched electric motor and gearhead, helping to achieve optimal energy efficiency in addition to extending the life of your equipment.
However, for many electrical and mechanical design engineers, choosing the right gear motor can be a complicated and challenging process. There are many factors to consider when selecting a gear motor. Whether you plan on purchasing a pre-engineered gear motor or choosing a gearbox and an electric motor separately, understanding the various application requirements is essential to finding the perfect match.
1.Know your application requirements for your gear motor.
The first step in selecting a gear motor is reviewing your application requirements. These include but are not limited to the followings:
- General requirements: Envelope size, mounting orientation, mounting type and size, overhung and side loads, and lubrication type.
- Input power source: Voltage, frequency (Hz), maximum current (Amps), and control type, if applicable.
- Gear motor specifications: Size, weight, desired noise level, life expectancy, and maintenance level.
- Gear motor performance: speed, torque, duty cycle, horsepower, starting and running torque (full load).
- Operation environment: Application and ambient temperature, and ingress protection (IP) rating.
2. Select the proper motor.
Next, use your list of application requirements and compare them to the motor specifications of the different types you are interested in, such as a universal, brushless DC, AC induction, or a permanent magnet gear motor. Because each application has its unique characteristics and requirements, it is vital to note which factor such as horsepower, starting torque, or efficiency is most important to your application. During this phase, you may decide that matching a gearbox and motor will best suit your needs.
3. Know the speed and torque requirements of the load to be driven.
To ensure your gear motor is the right size for your intended application, it’s vital to know your output speed, starting and running torque. Selecting the proper gear motor is a matter of matching output speed (RPM) and torque to your application’s needs. The output speed is determined by the requirements of your machine and should be known. That leaves the starting and running torque to be determined. Keep in mind that when you choose a pre-engineered gear motor, the manufacturer has done most of the heavy lifting to ensure that the motor and gearbox will work seamlessly.
Once you have calculated your starting and running torque, use a manufacturer’s performance curve for torque, speed, and efficiency to find a motor that matches your needs. Then review potential design limitations, including the running (full-load) gearbox torque, input speed, gearbox yield strength, thermal characteristics, and duty cycles.
4.Test the motor
Once you have selected a gear motor, it is vital to run several tests to ensure the motor runs well in a typical operating environment. If the motor becomes unreasonably hot, is too noisy, or appears stressed, repeat the motor selection process or contact the manufacturer.
Taking the time to properly size your gear motor will help ensure that it will last for years and operate at peak efficiency.
The product statements contained herein are intended for informational purposes only. Such product statements do not constitute a product recommendation or representation as to the appropriateness for a specific application or use. Kinmore Motor does not guarantee the result of product operation or assume any liability for personal injury or property damage resulting from the use of such products.