At Thomson Lamination Company, Inc. (TLC), we excel at niche-market, specialty, and tight-tolerance stamped laminations for mission-critical rotating components. Here, we will address some common questions that we’ve received from customers about our motor laminations for electric motors.

What are motor laminations?

Motor laminations are thin sheets of steel stamped in the shape of a rotor or stator. These laminations are then stacked to form the core of an electric motor’s rotor and stator.

How do manufacturers make motor laminations?

Manufacturers use several techniques to produce high-performance motor laminations from steel coils in the desired dimensions and configurations. The motor core lamination process includes the following:

  • Wire electrical discharge machining (EDM)
  • Stamping
  • Laser and waterjet cutting
  • Notching

Once the motor laminations are made in the desired size and shape, manufacturers create lamination stacks by bonding, welding, staking, and riveting the metal layers together to create the core of the motor.

What is the difference between annealing and heat treating?

The annealing process involves heating and then cooling a material slowly to alleviate the metal’s internal stress and deliver certain desired properties, such as reduced core loss, improved magnetic performance, and increased permeability. Annealing is actually a type of heat treatment, with heat treating being the more general process of altering a material’s temperature to enhance the properties of a metal based on your application’s requirements.

What materials are motor laminations made of?

The most common material for motor laminations is silicon steel, which offers low core loss and enhanced permeability. Motor manufacturers use various grades of steel to deliver the desired properties that meet your motor’s performance requirements. Cobalt and nickel alloys are additional material options, providing improved magnetic performance and reduced core loss.

Why are motor laminations made of thin metals?

Thin metals are ideal for motor lamination construction because they diminish losses in energy from hysteresis and eddy currents.

What are the benefits of using motor laminations in electric motors, and how do they contribute to a motor’s overall performance?

The role of laminations is critical to maximizing efficiency and minimizing heat production and energy loss in an electric motor. These laminations also enhance a motor’s distribution of magnetic flux to improve its performance.

What design factors should you consider when selecting motor laminations for a specific application?

When attempting to choose the right motor lamination to achieve the necessary operational efficiency and electric motor performance to suit your needs, you should first consider the following:

  • The lamination’s material construction
  • The appropriate material thickness
  • The material’s magnetic properties
  • The type of coatings
  • The lamination’s manufacturability

Need more insights on motor laminations? Let TLC be your guide!

The TLC team knows it can be difficult to navigate the intricacies of motor laminations for electric motors. To that end, our motor lamination experts can provide personalized support, addressing your most challenging questions on the lamination process, heat treating and annealing, the benefits of a certain material, and more. We’ll help guide you to the optimal rotor and stator stamped lamination solution for your project. Whether you’re interested in a lamination prototype, a high-volume order, or anything in between, we’re here to help with tight-tolerance motor laminations from high-conductivity metals.

Browse our eBook “Choosing the Right Material: Why is Stack Prototyping Important” for more details about material selection, or contact us today to speak with a specialist about your motor lamination needs.