Aisin Seki Co pioneers economic electric water cooling pump.

August 30, 2012 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Electronics supplier Aisin Seki Co., Ltd announced that it has developed a smaller, cheaper electric cooling pump through some effective efficiency optimisations. Cars traditionally use mechanical water cooling pumps, which have a flow rate dependent on the engine speed. Electric cooling pumps offer greater control over the water flow allowing significant fuel economies, particularly important in view of rising environmental concerns. However electric pumps are traditionally much larger than their mechanical counterparts.

Among other adaptations the Aisin electric pump uses a newly shaped impeller to improve performance. In addition, the design positions the components so that both the motor efficiency and the centrifugal pump mutually benefit. The pump also uses fewer components, allowing it to occupy less space.

With the efficiency improvements less heat is generated. The pump design also incorporates an aluminium enclosure, which acts as a heat sink, further easing the heat resistance requirements. Notably, the cost of the electric pump was reduced by using an inexpensive and heat resistant printed circuit board.

Customer satisfaction and concern for the environment are important aspects of the company's 'quality first’ corporate principle. The new engine pump will allow significant fuel economies, reducing fossil fuel consumption, and the expense of running the engine. It has been designed so that it can be installed in the same position as mechanical pumps, thereby simplifying the move to electric powered pumps.

Background

Controlling the water flow in engine cooling systems has been identified as an effective approach to fuel reduction. Following work to develop electric pumps for cooling inverters, Aisin Seki focused on automobile cooling systems. Electric pumps run independently of the engine speed, which allows greater control over the water flow and consequently reductions in fuel consumption.

To substitute mechanical pumps with electric ones they should operate in the same part of the engine. The main issue in attempting to substitute mechanical pumps with electric ones is size. Electric pumps tend to be much larger in order to achieve the same discharge flow rate.

Aisin Seki has tackled a number of factors that impinge on the efficiency of electric pumps. These efficiency enhancements mean that the size of their pumps can be decreased. Three elements affect the overall efficiency of the electric pump: the driver, the motor and the pump itself, which generally has a low efficiency.

1. Improving pump efficiency

Optimizations to the shape