Development and control of a low-cost linear variable-reluctance motor for precision manufacturing automation

W. C. Gan, Chow Norbert Cheung

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


Most advanced manufacturing process require precise linear-position control for material transfer, packaging, assembly, and electrical wiring. To achieve precise linear motion, most of these high-performance manufacturing machines use X-Y sliding tables with permanent-magnet rotary motors and rotary-to-linear couplers. Though this method is the most widely used, it has disadvantages of low accuracy, complex mechanical adjustment, high cost, and low reliability. This paper describes the use of the variable-reluctance-driving principle to construct a novel linear direct-drive actuator system for high-performance position control in manufacturing automation. The proposed actuator has a very simple structure and it can be manufactured easily. There is no need for magnets and no limitation on the traveling distance. The actuator is extremely robust and can be used in hostile environment. A novel control method, using cascade control and the force-linearization technique, is developed and implemented for precision position control of the actuator. Experiment results of the motion system indicate that the system has fast responses with good accuracy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)326-333
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2003


  • Linear variable-reluctance motor (LVRM)
  • Lookup table force linearization
  • Low-cost implementation
  • Precision manufacturing automation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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