Design trade-offs and feasibility assessment of a novel one-body, laminated-rotor flywheel switched reluctance machine †

Roberto Rocca, Savvas Papadopoulos, Mohamed Rashed, George Prassinos, Fabio Giulii Capponi, Michael Galea

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


In a bid to respond to the challenges being faced in the installation of flywheel-based electric energy storage systems (EESSs) in customer-side facilities, namely high safety, high energy/power densities and low cost, research work towards the development of a novel, one-body, laminated-rotor flywheel, based on a switched reluctance machine (OBOLAR-Fly SR machine) is presented, where the laminated rotor provides both the energy storage and motor/generator functions. The one-body architecture improves compactness and robustness. Besides, the rotor’s laminated body ensures inherently high safety. From the design perspective, the rotor’s dual purpose causes the traditional electrical machines design aspects, such as power development, cooling, losses, torque ripple, etc., to clash with the typical requirements of a flywheel, namely in-vacuum operation and moment of inertia. This results in six main trade-offs to be addressed during the design process: Rotor material, speed ratio, number of drive phases, split ratio, optimal vacuum level, and controller hysteresis band. A 60 kW, 2.2 kWh OBOLAR-Fly SR system is developed with a twofold objective: (1) provide an in-depth description of the six bespoke design trade-offs and give some useful guidelines to tackle them; (2) prove the OBOLAR-Fly concept and compare the prototype’s performance with the current state of the art flywheels. Preliminary experimental results prove the viability of the OBOLAR idea and show its competitiveness in terms of efficiency and power density. On the other hand, a gap in energy density to be filled in future research works is highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5857
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 2 Nov 2020


  • Customer-side installation
  • Energy storage system
  • High-speed
  • Integrated flywheel
  • Interference fit
  • Laminated rotor
  • Machine design
  • One body flywheel
  • Switched reluctance drive

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Building and Construction
  • Fuel Technology
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Control and Optimization
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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