Rotors are defined as any mechanical parts that rotate. Rotors are ubiquitous - they are used in diverse applications like turbines, turbopumps, centrifugal pumps, fans, centrifugal compressors and other thermal and hydraulic machines. They are also used in many synchronous and asynchronous electrical machines, helicopters, in the drives of vehicles that feature mechanical energy storage (flywheels), windmill hubs, machine tools (flywheels, spindles, etc.) and other machines. Rotors are also used in industrial machines like steam and gas turbines, reciprocating compressors, etc. While the rotor is the rotating part of a motor/generator, the stator is the stationary part. While most people associate rotors with brake rotors, that is not necessarily their only purpose.
As the average speed of machines keep on increasing, designing and casting of rotors is an increasingly challenging job for casting manufacturers.
Rotor Design Considerations
By their very definition, rotors are mechanical components that rotate. The calculation and design problems presented by rotors cannot be generalized. Each rotor presents its own design and casting challenges. In all cases, the design of a rotor is linked with the rotation of the structural element.
Rotors are subjected to a wide range of dissimilar load conditions. Some, like torques and axial thrust on turbine rotors are independent of rotation while others are directly related with their angular velocity. Rotors that face uneven temperature fluctuations like turbine disks, brake disks, etc. present a different design challenge. At the same time, the availability of newer, heat resistant casting material has allowed rotor designers to explore newer design options. And the advances in CAD / CAM techniques present the developers an option to design rotors in a better fashion.
Why India for Rotor Casting?
As seen above, rotor casting and manufacturing can be quite a daunting task. More than only metallurgical considerations, rotor manufacturers need to have state of the art CAD / CAE tools and skilled manpower to design and execute the casting process. India is replete with proper resources to manufacture rotor casting. Indian engineers are one of the best in the world, the casting manufacturers in India are trained in their business, and the raw material available for castings is plentiful. All these aspects make India a forerunner when it comes to manufacturing / casting rotors and other mechanical components.