Electric Motors Should be More Fun

We encounter mechanical phenomena all the time. We see things move, fall, spin, oscillate, break, etc. Electrical phenomena, on the other hand, are not always visible. Therefore, it has become a common practice to use mechanical analogies to explain and teach less visible concepts.

Classical analogy. Source

We compare electrons to water when explaining voltage, current, and Ohm’s law. The inductor is often compared to a spring, and the capacitor to a mass/inertia. The electrical resonance can then be compared to the mechanical resonance.

Even control engineers use mechanical analogies to illustrate their concepts; the proportional-derivative controller is nothing but a mass-damper system in that sense.

The theory of AC motors involves many difficult concepts, often explained with mathematical formulas and graphs. This is an obstacle to effective teaching and vulgarization. In this post, I propose 3 ideas to make the teaching of AC motors more fun. My goal is to stimulate more ideas and analogies; if you have some, please share them.

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