Motors, Generators and Actuators

Indispensable companion to machine designers

Opera is proven to provide accurate electromagnetic field modelling for all types of machines, including axial flux topologies and linear motion devices. With comprehensive material modelling options (including magnetization, demagnetization in service and full vector hysteresis material model) and easy definition of external drive circuits, Opera facilitates machines design with ease.

Why choose Opera?

Dialog-driven data-entry for 2 & 3 spatial dimensions

Automatic build, setup and post-processing of accurate FE models for electrical machines

Optimize machine designs prior to physical prototype

Easily try different variations of your design

Multi-physics modelling available as standard

Accurately predict the behaviour of your motor when including multi-physics effects.

What are the capabilities?

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The Opera Simulation Software Suite is a powerful interactive Finite Element Analysis (FEA) software package proven to provide accurate electromagnetic field modelling for all types of machines, including axial flux topologies and linear motion devices. Electromagnetic and other physics solvers, that provide different levels of analysis complexity, are available to offer users the best tools for their requirements. Comprehensive material modelling options (including magnetization, demagnetization in service and full vector hysteresis material model) as well as easy definition of external drive circuits are all geared towards facilitating machines design. The integrated Optimizer provides an efficient route from concept to competitive product. The Machines Environments (ME) is an easy to use, template-driven development tool specifically designed for electrical machines engineers.

Opera-2d offers functionality for designing most radial flux machines in two dimensions, by using the assumption that for the majority of the length of the machine a Cartesian (XY) cross-sectional analysis accurately defines the behaviour.

Opera-3d supplies three dimensional modelling, essential when:

  • the length of the machine is short compared to the radius
  • the rotor and stator lengths are substantially different and this cannot be adequately compensated for by changes in material properties
  • axial flux paths exist that significantly affect the performance
  • more accurate representations of the end windings/induced current return paths are needed

Depending on the geometrical complexity and symmetry, users have the option of using either Opera-2d or Opera-3d. Statics, Steady-state and Transient with motion Opera’s Static solver provides an accurate representation of the electromagnetic behaviour of the machine. This is useful for certain types of machines where the fields can be considered as ‘frozen’ in time (as in the case of DC machines) or travelling at the same speed as the rotor (Synchronous Machines), Users can deploy the Steady-state (timevarying AC) solvers for machine analyses that include time varying fields, for example the induction machine or torque vs. slip characterisation.

By using the Transient with motion solvers, users can analyse completely the real-world performance of any machine. This also includes analysis of the effects of mechanical coupling. Losses Opera’s range of solvers allow users to evaluate Iron losses (including eddy current, hysteresis and excess/rotational components) for any type of machine. This can be done using Fourier methods with losses described by Steinmetz based formulations or directly from manufacturers curves. Users can calculate copper losses simply from the current flowing in simulated windings. Opera’s hysteresis solver gives users the ability to obtain explicit hysteresis losses (including rotational component losses and eddy current losses) by explicitly defining the materials’ conductivities. Any loss quantity can be used as a heat source in 2D or 3D? thermal analyses.

What are the applications?

The Machines Environment (ME) is an easy to use, template-driven development tool specifically designed for electrical machines engineers.

The Winding Tool is an application dedicated to electrical machine winding design. It provides output on winding scenarios which can be used directly with Opera FEA software.

The integrated Optimizer provides an efficient route from concept to competitive product.

• Induction machines

• Synchronous machines

• Brushless machines

• SRM and synchrel

• Clawpole generators

• Axial flux

• Commutating machines

• External rotor

• Magnetic gearing

• Linear motion machines

Frequently asked questions

Can I calculate a Torque-Speed curve for my Synchronous Reluctance Machine?

Yes. You can use either Opera’s general-purpose user interface, or the Machines Environment, which automates analysis processes for electrical machines. If you use the Opera-3d Machines Environment you can select a Torque-Speed analysis, which uses a flux-linkage technique to generate the torque-speed curve from a series of static runs. This is much more efficient than running a large number of motional analyses.

Can you display a Gorges Diagram for my electrical machine?

The Opera Winding Tool allows several key parameters for electrical windings, including the Gorges Diagram to be calculated and displayed.

Can Opera analyse my electrical machine under fault conditions?

Opera is general-purpose finite element simulation software that is available for 2d and 3d analyses. Opera solves the fundamental equations that describe the intrinsic electromagnetic behaviour of any electrical machine. This formulation means that the software applies equally well to fault conditions and normal operation, and predicts accurately the real-life performance in either state.

How do I account for demagnetization of my permanent magnets in my electrical machine?

Opera was designed with advanced material modelling in mind. It is able to treat a wide range of material properties, from the simplest linear material to full hysteresis models of soft magnetic materials, and the demagnetization of hard permanent magnets. In a demagnetization analysis, Opera records the progress of the material magnetization along the virgin characteristic, until the magnetizing field starts to reduce. Secondary ‘demagnetization’ characteristics are then used to determine the remnant magnetization vector when the magnetization process is complete. In both the magnetization and demagnetization processes, the effect of eddy currents and circuit transients are captured. During demagnetization, the values of the pre-stored values determine which demagnetization (second quadrant) curve each element follows and its direction of magnetization. Again the flux density in each element is monitored and the minimum values are stored in variables. The values can then be transferred to the standard Opera transient solvers. In such a simulation where the applied field from current sources etc are opposing the magnet’s field, the variables will show the operating point of the magnet. In a transient simulation, they will show the lowest operating point that was reached during the transient event. Demagnetization in service can therefore be modelled. The minimum field will be tracked and updated during subsequent simulations, and the appropriate demagnetization curve or recoil permeability will be used.

Can I look at magnetization of my permanent magnets before they are assembled into my electrical machine?

Opera was designed with advanced material modelling in mind. It is able to treat a wide range of material properties, from the simplest linear material to full hysteresis models of soft magnetic materials, and the demagnetization of hard permanent magnets. In a magnetization analysis, Opera records the progress of the material magnetization along the virgin characteristic, until the magnetizing field starts to reduce. Secondary ‘demagnetization’ characteristics are then used to determine the remnant magnetization vector when the magnetization process is complete. In both the magnetization and demagnetization processes, the effect of eddy currents and circuit transients are captured. The result is a magnetized sample, where the magnetization distribution is correctly defined. This can then be used in other simulations to model the performance of the magnetized sample in its designated application (eg. an electrical machine).

Can Opera calculate the losses in my machine?

Iron losses (including eddy current, hysteresis and excess/rotational components) can be evaluated using one of the relevant solvers for any type of machine, using Fourier methods with losses described by Steinmetz based formulations or directly from manufacturers curves. Copper losses can be calculated simply from the current flowing in simulated windings. Hysteresis losses including rotational component losses can be explicitly obtained using the hysteresis solver and eddy current losses by explicitly defining the materials’ conductivities. Any loss quantity can be used as a heat source in thermal analyses.