Motors, Generators & Controllers

Motors, Generators & Controllers

Since 1966, Barber-Nichols’ core competency has been the design and production of Specialty Turbomachinery.  However, as the maturity of electric machines rapidly advanced, the use of turbomachinery in conjunction with electric power products increased dramatically.  In order to offer our customers, the highest degree of system integration and the widest range of operating speeds, Barber-Nichols (BN) began offering custom motor designs in 2002 and custom drive designs in 2007. Today, BN offers a wide range of motor/generators, and their associated controllers, which are specifically designed to operate with high-speed turbomachinery.

Permanent Magnet Motors & Generators


Combined Motor Generator Controller on a Brayton Cycle Test Loop

For some system designs, a combination of motoring and generating is required.  This is particularly true for closed-loop Brayton-cycle systems which are often used for power generation or energy recovery.  At start-up, a Brayton-cycle turbo-compressor must be motored to establish initial process flow.  Once the initial flow conditions are established, heat is added to the process fluid and the turbine output power begins to overtake the compressor input power.  At this point, the turbo-generator-compressor can accelerate using only process energy.  As the heat input continues to increase, the excess output can be used to produce electric power.  Very specific motor/generator control is required to operate in motoring mode and seamlessly switch to generating mode.

All of the features listed for either motor control or generator control product can be integrated into a single motor-generator controller tailored to the customer requirements.

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