JAPAN: Daikin has achieved a top electrical award for its heavy-rare-earth-free motor for room air conditioners.
The Japanese air conditioning manufacturer was honoured in the 2023 (72nd) Electrical Industry Technology Achievement Award by the Japan Electrical Manufacturers Association (JEMA). The Best Award is an award given by JEMA to individuals who have contributed to the progress and development of the electrical industry by achieving outstanding results through the development of new products and new technologies in the fields of heavy electrical appliances, home appliances, and manufacturing.
Neodymium magnets can lose their strength through demagnetisation, which occurs when the magnet is exposed to high temperatures. The Daikin electric motor does away with the heavy rare earth elements dysprosium and terbium which are used in conventional high-efficiency motors to maintain the magnetic force of neodymium magnets. There are concerns over the continued supply of these rare earths due to their scarcity and the growing demand due to the spread of EVs.
The Daikin motor mimics the role played by the heavy rare earths through the use of a control technology that changes the operating range according to the magnet temperature. In addition, this technology reduces the amount of magnets and uses magnets with low demagnetisation resistance, which is expected to contribute to resource conservation and cost reduction in motors.