Permanent magnets are a critical component of electric motors and generators in a broad spectrum of applications. The rapid growth of the wind power and electromobility sectors has resulted in a greatly increased demand for highest performance Nd-Fe-B-based permanent magnets. Limited global resources of rare earth elements recquire the development of reduced or rare-earth-free permanent magnets.
The aim of this project is to produce a digital twin of rare earth-free MnAl-C permanent magnets. This requires a complete, quantitative description of the microstructure in three dimensions and detailed knowledge of the role of the different components of the microstructure in determining the magnetic properties. This information forms the basis for micromagnetic simulations of the magnetic properties based on realistic, simulated microstructures. The digital twin is evaluated by simulating the magnetic state of the material after exposure to a specific magnetic field history and comparing the results with the experiment. Machine learning is used to establish the relationship between experiment and simulation and to generate a realistic model of MnAl-C magnets.
On 25.4.2022 the first virtual kick-off meeting took place. Participants from IFW Dresden were Thomas G. Woodcock and Panpan Zhao. From UWK Krems Thomas Schrefl, Harald Özelt and Markus Gusenbauer participated. The main topic was the discussion about the next steps, prioritization of the work plan, all with focus on the upcoming project period. In WP1 and WP2 at IFW Dresden, we are now working on ways to generate 3D information on grain structures and to analyze material segregation of individual types of interfaces, such as triple junctions. In WP4, the micromagnetic part at UWK, the individual interfaces are analyzed with distributions of coercivity. In parallel, we will work on a toolchain to convert 3D microstructure measurements into simulation models. Grain structure statistics will help to generate artificial microstructures similar to the experimental measurements.
On 20.5. we were able to inspire young and old at the Long Night of Research 2022. The influence of permanent magnets on electromobility was demonstrated at a hands-on station. Those interested were able to find out how magnets influence the performance of electric motors with simple experiments. With our project we were able to show how important it is to develop permanent magnets without critical rare earths materials.
FWF, Projekt: I 5266-N