17-year-old boy designs an engine that can transform the electric car industry

Tram Ho

According to Smithsonian magazine (belonging to the world’s largest research institute Smithsonian, under the US Government), Robert Sansone (17 years old, in Fort Pierce, Florida, USA) is a “born engineer”, he invented from electronic hands to high-speed running shoes and a go-kart that can reach speeds of more than 113km/h.

This “inventor” estimates he has completed at least 60 engineering projects in his spare time outside of school.

A few years ago, Sansone watched a video about the advantages and disadvantages of electric cars . The video explains: Most electric car engines require magnets made from rare earth elements, which can be both financially and environmentally expensive to extract. The required rare earth materials can cost hundreds of dollars per kilogram. Meanwhile, copper is worth 7.83 USD/kg.

Nam sinh 17 tuổi thiết kế động cơ có khả năng biến đổi ngành công nghiệp ôtô điện - Ảnh 1.
Robert Sansone with his new engine – Photo: SOCIETY FOR SCIENCE

I have a passion for electric motors. I wanted to try to design another type of motor that uses copper ,” says Sansone.

On the home appliance market, there is a copper-core resistive motor that generates a rotating magnetic field, without using rare earth materials. This motor is currently used for pumps and fans, but it is not powerful enough for use in electric vehicles. So Sansone started brainstorming ways to improve its performance.

Over the course of a year, Sansone patented a copper-core resistive motor that generates a rotating magnetic field and is more efficient than existing motors. The prototype is made from 3-D printed plastic, copper wire and a steel rotor. This motor is tested using a variety of meters to measure power and a laser tachometer to determine the rotational speed of the motor.

Sansone’s design has other components, but I can’t reveal any more details, as Sansone hopes to patent the technology in the future.

Sansone’s product brought her the first prize and $75,000 in prize money in the largest international high school STEM competition at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2022.

Sansone is waiting for its next phase of testing before reaching out to auto companies. I hope one day my motor will be the design of choice for electric cars.

As a senior at Fort Pierce Central High School, Sansone dreamed of attending Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She said she would use her winnings from ISEF to pay for college tuition.

Heath Hofmann – professor of electrical and computer engineering at a university, has many years of work on electric vehicles, including consulting for Tesla to develop control algorithms for propulsion – highly appreciated Sansone’s efforts, but the machines were complex and notoriously difficult to manufacture, thus posing a barrier to Sansone’s invention.

Sansone agrees, but says ” with new technologies (such as 3-D printing), it will be easier to make new engines in the future “.

Share the news now

Source : Genk